Digital Schools: head teachers asked to complete ISER lockdown survey

Over the course of the current academic year Make Happen has been working with the Institute for Social and Economic Research (ISER), which is based at the University of Essex, to understand the impact of our outreach activities.

Separate to this ongoing research with Make Happen, ISER is also seeking to understand how the current Covid-19 situation may be affecting students’ education – through a new research project called Digital Schools.

In the interests of supporting ISER’s research, and our local partnerships, we are sharing the following information.

Digital Schools is asking head teachers and members of school leadership teams to complete a survey about the various teaching and learning practices they have adopted during schools’ closure due to the Covid-19 lockdown.

The Digital Schools research project is led by academics at the University of Essex. It aims to use the information gathered to study the impact of school closures on students’ educational outcomes.

The researchers hope this will provide vital information on students’ learning gaps and how they might be addressed going forward. This will be particularly important if students do not return to schools full-time over longer periods of time.

See full details about the survey, including how participants’ data will be collected and stored, below.

If you would like to take part in the ISER Digital Schools survey, please follow this link. The response deadline is 31 May and the survey will take no more than 10 minutes to complete.

 

About the Digital Schools survey

Invitation to our Study
Your school has been invited to participate in a new study conducted by academics at the University of Essex. Please read the following information carefully, it will tell you about the aims of the study, what your contribution will involve, and how the data collected will be processed and stored. Do not hesitate to contact us if there is anything that is not clear, or if you would like more information. Contact details are given below.

Background on the Study
The main purpose of the study “Digital Schools” is to document how schools continue to provide teaching and learning opportunities after UK-wide school closures came into place to combat the spread of Covid-19. We will document the schools’ use of online resources and use it to study the impact of school closures on students’ educational outcomes. To this aim, we plan to link data from this survey with data collected by the Department for Education on standard pupil test scores as well as characteristics of the student and staff populations and to the UK Household Longitudinal Study.

Your participation
Participation in the study is entirely voluntary. If you are unable to reply to the survey, we would be grateful if you could ask one of your colleagues to take part. We will not collect any identifying information about you.

Your right to withdraw from the Study
If after participating in the survey you change your mind about being part of the study, please write to us. You can withdraw at any time and without giving any reason. The research team will safely destroy all the data related to your school so that you response will not be included in the research.

What happens to the survey records afterwards?
The information collected from the online surveys will be analysed by our research team. Names of schools and other identifying details will be collected only for the purpose of linking the survey responses to administrative data collected by the Department for Education related to students’ test scores and the characteristics of the student and staff populations, as well as to the UK Household Longitudinal Survey. Any information that can lead to the identification of your school (such as school name and postcode) will be kept on a secure data drive and will be encrypted. The data will be used exclusively for research purposes. We will never use school names in any published paper or report or pass them on to other organisations. After the end of our project we will ask the UK Data Archive to archive the data and make it accessible safely to researchers for further non-commercial research. At this point, we will permanently delete the data from our servers.

Ethical approval
This project has been reviewed on behalf of the University of Essex Social Science Ethics Sub-Committee and has been given approval.

Concerns and complaints
If you have any concern or complaint, please contact Dr Birgitta Rabe, the principal investigator of the study. If you are still not satisfied, please contact Professor Paul Clarke, Director of Research at the Institute for Social and Economic Research at the University of Essex. If you need further clarifications, please contact the University of Essex Research Governance and Planning Manager. See all contact details below.

Survey contact details

Principal Investigator
Dr Birgitta Rabe
University of Essex
Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ
Email: brabe@essex.ac.uk

Director of Research
Professor Paul Clarke
University of Essex
Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ
Email: pclarke@essex.ac.uk

University of Essex Research Governance and Planning Manager
Sarah Manning-Press
Research & Enterprise Office
University of Essex
Wivenhoe Park
Colchester CO4 3SQ,
Email: sarahm@essex.ac.uk

"Digital Schools is asking head teachers and members of school leadership teams to complete a survey about the various teaching and learning practices they have adopted during schools’ closure due to the Covid-19 lockdown."