Case study: Preston School

    Preston School is a secondary school of around 950 students in Yeovil, Somerset. An innovative and forward thinking school, their values are underpinned by their belief all students must have the opportunity to learn, making AV1 a great tool for them to allow all their pupils to access their education.

    Gregg Morrison, Headteacher at Preston School shares their school’s experiences of AV1.

    “We had a pupil about to undergo 9 months of intensive treatment due to a brain tumour. We saw AV1 and thought it could be a great solution to allow our pupil to stay in contact with his friends and access his learning.”

    “To introduce AV1 to the school we held a staff meeting for those who would have AV1 in their class, which allowed them to try it themselves and ask questions. Parents were also invited in to try AV1 which they greatly appreciated. We held an introductory lesson to classmates so they could familiarise themselves with AV1, and from this, two of the users’ friends were appointed ‘AV1 buddies’, responsible for transporting it from class to class.”

    Preston School is one of several schools using AV1 in Somerset, and are part of a fantastic collaboration of schools called the ‘South Somerset 14-19 Partnership’ that share their experiences of using AV1 and recommendations for best practise. AV1 has had such a positive impact in the area, the Local Authority are looking to purchase more units, alongside primary and secondary schools, PRUs and Colleges, to provide to establishments when a child is in need.

    Gregg points to the success of the careful introduction and implementation of AV1 saying that “Everyone embraced the opportunity it gave to the student, There were no concerns. Our user had missed so much learning prior to using the AV1. It greatly improved his attendance levels as we marked him present when he was connected to AV1.”

    The aim is not for AV1 to replace teachers, or for the student to reply upon it but rather to bridge the gap when a student can’t attend school and to allow the return to school to be as smooth as possible. At Preston School, AV1 achieved this. Gregg adds “The flexibility is key, and it made for an easier transition back to school as we could gradually phase out the use of AV1 as he was able to attend more. It has allowed a very sick child to keep in touch with their friends and access learning, and we wholeheartedly recommend it.”