Hugh Baird College in Liverpool has been using Microsoft Teams throughout the coronavirus pandemic to connect staff and students. The platform has enabled lessons, choir practice and social activities to continue virtually for learners of all abilities.
Lessons can be recorded which allows students to watch content back at a time that suits them. Tutors can also respond in their own time to any questions they receive via the chat function. Microsoft says that this is “particularly helpful to the large number of students at the college who are also key workers”, many of whom work in hospitals and care homes and study part-time.
“Seeing Hugh Baird College continue to provide a community for its students through this difficult time is truly inspiring,” said Chris Rothwell, director of education at Microsoft UK. “Its story is a prime example of how technology can be used in education to help everyone access learning and support.”
The college offers courses to around 5,000 students, some of whom have hearing impairments and receive British Sign Language (BSL) tutoring. These lessons have continued via Teams with interpreters.
Another group of students at the college’s Thornton College campus – a specialist centre for young people with learning difficulties or physical disabilities – have attended their regular Makaton choir practices via the application.
“Throughout the lockdown period, all our teaching delivery has been undertaken remotely using Teams,” said Christine Snape, Hugh Baird College’s director of foundation learning. “Both students and staff have fully embraced the tools the application provides and have become more adventurous and innovative with its use, which is evident with our Makaton choir and BSL classes.”
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