SNJ in Conversation: Oak Academy’s improving SEND offer

One of the few positives of the pandemic and lockdown, was the creation of the Oak Academy resource, an online suite of lessons created by a group of volunteer teachers. They wanted to help support children's education as a supplement to what their schools were providing during coronavirus. While many children benefited from their teachers' hard work teaching them remotely, as our survey revealed, this was far from a universal experience.

Oak's lessons came as a godsend to many families, although its sparse SEND offer and lack of differentiation came in for criticism from some, which was perhaps unfair, given the speed with which it was created. Since its launch it has been supported by the Departmen for Education, commissioned to create 10,000 lessons for the coming year.

It also has a new specialist curriculum lead in Anne Heavey, who is director of Whole School SEND. Anne is working to improve Oak Academy's offer for children and young people with SEND and she wants you to send her any ideas you have to her via Twitter. She recently joined us for a chat about her plans for an episode of SNJ in Conversation. When you start to listen, you may think you missed one as we welcome her back - but don't worry, we have recorded another topic with Anne but decided to release this one first (stay tuned for the next one next week!)

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Tania Tirraoro
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