High school assembly – Sydney Distance Education

Sydney Distance Education High School runs virtual assemblies once per term to provide information about the school to students and supervisors.

Context

School type

Students who meet specific enrolment requirements attend Sydney Distance Education High School because they are not able to attend another school on a full time basis. We teach courses for full-time and part-time students, including students with medical conditions and those with additional support needs. We also teach students studying single courses which they are not able to access at their home schools. We offer a range of courses in Years 7 – 10 with our middle school program providing further courses for students who need additional literacy and numeracy support. We teach 40 courses for Years 11-12.

Size

Our school has 1452 students, over 145 full-time teaching positions and 21 support staff. In total we employ more than 200 full-time and part-time staff.

Location

The school is based in Woolloomooloo, but we serve students from areas north of Wollongong, south of Newcastle, and west to the Blue Mountains.

Virtual assemblies

The school runs virtual assemblies once per term to provide information about the school to students and supervisors. There have been four so far with the most recent assembly on Thursday 27 August. The assemblies are approximately 20 minutes long and have live content, pre-recorded feeds and live crosses.

Later in the year the school will conduct virtual presentation assemblies for Year 12 and Year 10. The team are currently researching options to embed a moderated back channel discussion (using Padlet) for the presentation streams to provide two-way interaction.

There is a live stream placeholder on our school website and there are video recordings of previous assemblies.

Image: Lisa Keating, Principal Sydney Distance Education High School

Equipment used

Most of the equipment and video expertise was already in the school.

  • Mac Book pro
  • iPhone
  • DSLR Camera
  • OBS software
  • Teleprompter
  • 4G internet dongle
  • Tripods
  • Greenscreen
  • Premier Pro for editing prerecorded video.

The main hurdles were:

  • acquiring a 4G dongle as the school wifi would not work
  • learning the OBS and Brightcove software
  • switching to remote locations.

Process

Who was involved

  • Two teachers organised, shot and edited the pre-recorded videos and were producers during the livestream.
  • A computer coordinator provided technical support for equipment, Brightcove and AEM.
  • And of course, the talent - Principal, DP, head teachers, teachers, students.

Steps taken

We followed the department's livestreaming guides (with some direct support from the department video team):

We developed a plan to schedule the live video (speeches), prerecorded video, credits, titles, images and live crosses. All the live speeches were scripted and rehearsed in advance and a teleprompter was used to keep it on time.

Image: A student speaks on camera during the virtual assembly

Checks

Copyright

All music had a creative commons license.

Permissions

All students recorded in the prerecorded video had signed parent/carer permission to publish approval.

Code of conduct

Was not an issue as all content was either prerecorded or highly scripted and delivered by a staff member.

Further information

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