Remote education strategy: virtual teaching and learning for Parenta learners

Remote education strategy: virtual teaching and learning for Parenta learners

We unconditionally support all our employers and apprentices through their learning journey from start to finish – which has never been needed more so than now during these unprecedented and difficult times. Where learners are either self-isolating at home, or if local restrictions require them to remain at home, or working in the setting that isn’t allowing any external visitors they know that they are still in safe hands with us as we strive to reduce any impact on their learning.

Delivery of apprenticeships

  • In response to the pandemic, we have developed a robust and comprehensive virtual delivery process of our apprenticeships and using the online e-portfolio OneFile, our tutors are able to work together with the apprentices and employers to set out the bespoke and mutually agreed timetable of the course.
  • Our learners really benefit from using OneFile which enables them to retain constant contact with their tutor. They can download many useful guides and resources relevant to their qualification and upload their work for their tutor to assess and then discuss together in their next ‘meeting’.
  • All our employers have access to the learner portfolio, giving them clear visibility on how their apprentice is progressing; and identifying areas that they need to work on.
  • The regular, in-depth virtual teaching and learning sessions are held with all learners, and are compulsory. They are supported by an approx. 10-week review, which is attended by the learner’s manager and regular feedback is gathered from our employers to ensure they are engaged in the learner's progress and are at hand to provide additional support.
  • The observations and assessments that are carried out between our tutors and apprentices are done virtually or by telephone and discussed in depth to enable our learners to know where they need to improve in preparation for the next assessment.
  • We believe that pastoral care is so important, especially for our younger learners, that is why we have a dedicated learner support team who keep in regular touch with all our new apprentices and their nursery managers for the first few months, giving practical help and guidance to enable them to make a positive start to their learning journey. This ‘pastoral care’ also ensures the appropriate support mechanisms are in place for our apprentices throughout their whole course.
  • If any of our learners are shielding or medically vulnerable, they are advised to strictly follow the government guidelines regarding this which can be found here.
  • We work closely with our awarding bodies and are able to use their proctoring exam functions in support of learners completing their qualifications remotely. This means we can work in partnership with our setting managers who are able to complete observations and manage exam invigilation, should the setting remain open or when the learner is out of self-isolation.

Expectations of students and employers

We understand that all learners have varying learning styles; and all learn at a different pace. Because we work so closely with learners and employers, taking time to put together each individual learning plan, we know what works for them as individuals - and also how they fit in with the dynamic of the team at work. We give them clear guidelines - and this three-way commitment between us - the training provider, the apprentice and the employer which is laid out at the beginning, continues throughout the apprentice's learning journey all the way through to Gateway and End Point Assessment.

This regular communication which forms a solid relationship between the learner, the employer and us means that any gaps in learning can be avoided, ensuring minimum disruption, as well as complying with ESFA and Ofsted regulations.

Functional Skills Support

Commitment is something we expect from our tutors, employers and learners. Using this foundation, we work with our learners to respond well to the remote teaching and learning as well as functional skills sessions. When settings are closed or if learners must self-isolate, we focus a lot of the tasks or sessions around their off-the-job training, helping the employer save time when the learner can return back to work.

Students studying courses that require specialist equipment or facilities

Where appropriate, we work in partnership with training providers of specialist equipment or facilities - where the qualification requires it.

Support for students without devices, connectivity or a suitable environment for learning

We understand that in certain circumstances, internet connectivity, or the availability of an electronic device for a learner is not always possible. We try and prepare for this eventuality as much as we can, spending time discussing with learners their individual circumstances. So many of our learners use their mobile phones (or their tablets), not only to access the remote sessions with their tutor, but also to upload evidence onto their online learning portfolio. This is a preferred option for so many students! Our tutors will work with the learners and always find a way to be able to communicate with them, delivering their sessions via telephone if necessary or using postal methods to send assignments for learners to complete.

Department for Education releases new guidance for apprenticeship providers
Department for Education releases new guidance for apprenticeship providers

Support for learners with SEND

We work closely with all those learners with SEND to help them gain their qualification and reach their full potential. Most apprentices with learning difficulties can learn to a high standard, but do so in different ways, and usually there is a routine provided within that job. They may have limited literacy and numeracy skills and potentially have difficulty in understanding and interpreting given situations (leading to slower process of information) but that does not mean that they are unable to succeed.

Our learners that need additional tuition with maths and English attend virtual sessions with our team of dedicated specialist skills tutors. These are on a one-to-one basis to give them every possible chance to improve. 


As well as the live lessons we send extra resources, guides and then links to the exams themselves - and then work together with employers so that our learners can have extra time to complete their exams, if needed.

We know that each individual learner has different needs, so from the outset, we are consistent in using an organised routine, and make sure that the learner is notified of any changes in routine well in advance. Short, simple instructions are given, and we encourage all apprentices to talk through a task before attempting it. Short, clearly defined targets are set, and small achievements are praised. We help with organising their written work by using writing frames/templates and other alternative methods of recording.

Giving our apprentices who have special educational needs the support they require will not only help them to develop their personal skills with confidence but will give them every opportunity to gain their qualification and progress their childcare career.

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