Coping with staff shortages and absence

Is your school experiencing difficulties with staff shortages or higher than usual staff absentee rates? 

Illness, Professional Development days, leave requests and unforeseen circumstances can place a huge strain on schools. Luckily, Education Perfect can provide much needed assistance to help manage these turbulent times.

Absent teachers

Teachers who are absent from classes for any reason can easily leave work for students by assigning a task. Multiple lessons can be assigned in a Task and teachers can assign additional Tasks should their absence be extended.

Absent teachers can also remotely monitor the engagement of students on the work provided and contact students as a group or individually through the in-platform messaging feature, Cheers

Relief teacher access

Schools are encouraged to create generic teacher accounts that can be provided to relief staff for use across the course of the day. 

  • Name them something simple like Relief Teacher 1 and Relief Teacher 2
  • Where email addresses are required, schools could use generic ‘admin’ or school-based addresses. Please reach out to our Support Team for assistance with overriding the email address requirement if needed.

Relief staff can then view work left for students, assign additional Tasks and monitor student activity from their device. 

The free EP Teacher App can also be installed on mobile devices and provides a range of platform options from the palm of the hand should a school-supplied device not be possible. (Apple | Android)

Important: To ensure continued student data privacy, it is recommended that passwords are reset for these accounts at the end of each day.

Collapsed or combined classes

Setting work for collapsed or combined classes is quick and easy on EP and can ensure continuity of learning.

Assign a task, and under Who?, click All Classes.

This reveals a list of all enrolled classes at the school. Relevant classes can be selected and Tasks assigned in a single setup.

Monitoring student activity

It’s easy to monitor real time student activity using the Live Feed option within an assigned Task. 

This feature alerts supervising staff immediately to any student who is off-task, experiencing difficulty or who may have completed the Task.

The Progress report can also inform absent staff of what was completed while they were away.

If Tasks haven’t been assigned to students (therefore the Live Feed isn’t an option), staff can use the Insights area of the platform to check activity.

To do this, navigate to the class or school report and use the filter options at the top to narrow down class, subject and date.

This produces an overview of what students completed during this time. Results can be found in the Student Engagement and Recent Activity sections.

Time to spare!

If students complete assigned work with time to spare, additional work can be assigned to these students by assigning a task. Work can also be assigned to individual students instead of the whole class where necessary.

Alternatively, students may wish to find an activity of their own to work on. They can do this by selecting the relevant subject from their Student Dashboard and clicking Browse all content.

For large numbers of students who finish early, check out the following section.

No work left for students

If work hasn’t been supplied to cover the absence of a teacher, there are some great options within EP that can assist quickly and easily and minimise the disruption to learning.

  1. Assigning a task can be done in a matter of minutes and provides options for live monitoring of student activity.
  2. At the end of most EP lessons is Dash, our fun, single- or multiplayer revision game. Students will be asked up to 10 random questions from a lesson, and they need to answer as quickly as possible. It’s fast-paced and students love it!
  3. Setting a competition is also a great way to engage students in productive work for a lesson or even just for the few minutes you might have spare at the end of a class! Students are able to earn points across content relating to an entire subject or by selecting specific topics for them to focus on.
  4. Whole class games are another fantastic way to occupy students while still supporting learning and productivity. There are plenty of ideas and most only require a single laptop.

Support for non-specialist teachers

It’s no secret that there’s a shortage of teachers across a number of key learning areas. It’s often necessary for teachers to teach ‘out of area’ to fill gaps. Often, elective classes can't run without a teacher. 

EP can help ease the burden on non-specialist teachers and provide classes with equitable access to quality education, no matter who is assigned.

  • A range of comprehensive curriculum maps align syllabus requirements to lessons on the platform. No specialist knowledge required!
  • The 'search' function in the Content Library allows teachers to locate specific lessons quickly and easily.
  • Teachers can preview lessons and self-teach concepts prior to class.
  • Fullscreen mode allows teachers to use lessons as whole-class presentations, saving the need to build their own slides or resources for direct instruction.
  • Automarked questions come complete with answer explanations.
  • Extended Response questions contain model answers to allow students to self-mark, making the feedback process straightforward for non-specialist teachers.
  • The Peer Review feature enables students to provide each other with feedback on Extended Response answers.

Need help? The EP team is here to support you. Reach out to our Support Team for assistance.

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