Primary school assembly – Sylvania Heights

Sylvania Heights Public School is a K-6 Primary school in Sydney’s Sutherland Shire. During the learning from home period the school began holding virtual assemblies using the Brightcove platform.

With more than 600 students, Sylvania Heights Public School prides itself on innovation and quality teaching with a focus on building resilient, respectful and successful learners.

Throughout 2020, the school tackled the challenges of moving some of their experiences online. They realised the benefits this could have beyond the period of learning from home. One of those initiatives was their fortnightly whole school assemblies. These events are now more accessible to their community than ever before with the experiences live streamed through Brightcove.

The team at Sylvania have shown what you can do with grit, determination and some creative thinking.

K-6 virtual assembly week 2 Term 2

Equipment used

The team at Sylvania used the Brightcove platform to both stream their assemblies as well as to host the content so that it is available to view on demand later. This service is free to all NSW public schools, and it is simple to access and use.

Their camera equipment is nothing fancy, with the students and teachers simply using a school laptop's webcam. To enable the livestream, the team used Open Broadcaster Software (OBS), which let them switch between different sources including a holding slide and the webcam.

One of the advantages of using the Brightcove platform is that the videos and live stream can be easily embedded into your school website. This makes it simple for parents and the community to view your content.

Process

According to Principal Clint White, the team at Sylvania Heights did not have to change much of their planning and processes for their online assemblies. The school captains and assembly team continued to run the experiences as they had done previously, but their audience was now a webcam instead of a hall of parents, community members and students.

One thing they did need to consider was preparing everyone involved in each assembly to minimise downtime. Having all assembly talent ready and primed for action is imperative. Principal Clint White says it's important to always have a backup plan and be ready to jump in and fill the silence.

The team used a smaller, carpeted space to film the experience to ensure the best sound quality in an environment with minimal echo. They also made sure to choose a quiet time in the school day to record.

The terms OBS and Live Stream may sound daunting, but Clint and his team found the help and guidance material on the Brightcove information page structured their processes and made it simple, reliable and effective.

Checks

Just as they would for other school events, the team at Sylvania Heights did their due diligence to ensure they met all safety and privacy requirements. They made sure all participants had appropriate permission to publish and also informed their community before commencing their online program. Visit the Permissions page for more information.

Further information

Have a look at the Sylvania Heights website for more information about their experience.

For more information on how to use Brightcove to keep your community connected take a look at the department’s Brightcove guide in the Virtual Celebration Toolkit.

We would like to thank the whole team at Sylvania Heights Public School for sharing their amazing approach to keeping their community informed and connected.

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