We are still here for you. College staff are working remotely and are continuing to teach and support our students.
We have been keeping a close eye on how your qualifications will be awarded and other FAQs concerning your learning and progression from college. We don't have all the answers yet, but here is what we know now. There are many different types of courses at the college and possible questions you will have about what will happen next. Please stay in touch with you tutors to keep up to date with what is happening on your course.
The FAQs below set out our current plans, which we will continue to review as the situation develops and we will keep this information updated.
When will be back in College?
All full-time learners will return the week commencing Monday 8th March 2021 and resume their normal timetable from the day they have been invited to test for COVID-19. Your tutor will be in contact (probably using Teams) to tell you which day you should first attend.
Apprentices who are due into College on a weekly basis will resume their in college sessions.
Part-time learners and adult learners will also return on this date unless informed differently by your course tutor. Higher Education learners will be contacted by their Head of Department/Course Lead regarding the teaching arrangements as it varies due to the practical nature of some programmes.
When will I receive my Covid-19 Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test as a full time student?
You will be invited into college for your first testing slot with your group. Your first testing slot will be as soon as we can make it after your normal start time in the week beginning the 8th March. You will be tested three times before Friday 19th March. After this, you will move on to testing at home twice each week.
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or feel unwell, please do not come into college. Please book a PCR test via the Government Website (https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test) and follow the advice provided as part of this process. Please inform the college of this booking and the outcome of the test via the firstname.lastname@example.org email.
I have a ‘rainbow’ coloured lanyard – do the testing procedures apply to me?
No. As before you should maintain 2m social distancing with all other people whilst you are in college, and therefore regular testing is not required. The testing procedures outlined here are for full-time students (or those mixing with them in class). We will give you an opportunity to get tested at the college test centre if you wish. However, this may require you to travel to college outside your regular class time/s.
Is it my choice to be tested?
Yes; though we encourage you to do so. You will be asked to provide consent before taking a test at college. By carrying out the home test you are providing consent as you will be self-administering. If you refuse to give consent you may still attend college, but testing will help protect those around you and their family members, many of whom may be vulnerable to the effect of COVID-19.
What happens if I test positive via the Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test?
You will be required to leave college and return home to self-isolate and book into a PCR test via the link here (https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test). Advice and guidance will be given to you in terms of how long for and when you are able to return to college. You will not be able to access public transport, therefore you will need to arrange for a family member to collect you from a specific area where we will ask you to wait in college. If this is not possible you will be asked to wait in an isolated area until you can go home. If you have symptoms of COVID-19 or unwell, please do not come into college.
After my test do I return to class or wait somewhere?
After your test, you will return to your classroom and the result will be received via the communication method agreed as part of the testing process, usually a message to your mobile phone. The testing staff will also inform you if you test positive.
Will the Milnthorpe Road Campus café be open?
We will provide a temporary café, with a limited menu, in the short term. We plan to re-open the Milnthorpe Road Café as soon as we can. It is currently set up as our Covid testing centre. At present we expect there to be a period where we continue to use the café for testing before we move the test centre and plan to resume service in the Café from the 22nd of March.
Will the Arts & Media Campus Café be open?
There is now building work going on at Milnthorpe Road. Can I still park there?
Yes, but parking will be very limited as our contractors need access to some of the car parks.
Will I still be in a ‘bubble’ with my class?
Yes, you will remain in departmental class bubbles. However, the rules of contact between you and your classmates have changed and you need to wear face masks in class. All learners are required to wear their lanyard which identifies the bubble department they are in. All learners in bubbles will be encouraged not to engage in any physical contact, and to wear masks when a 2-metre distance is not possible or other safety measures prevent it.
Adult learners with rainbow lanyards will be asked to maintain social distancing at all times as they do not form part of a department bubble.
All learners will be encouraged to socially distance whenever they can if space allows, whether they are in a bubble or not.
Do the Colleges’ Covid-19 measures still apply?
Yes. All the colleges' infection control measures will still be in place as they were when you were last in. Additionally, you will be expected to wear face masks in your class if you are not 2 metres apart from the other students.
I have received a shielding letter from the NHS - how do I access my programme if unable to attend?
If you have received a shielding letter, please discuss this with your Course Tutor or relevant Head of Department and they will discuss programme requirements and how we can support your learning.
If I have had the vaccine, should I be tested?
Yes, since the vaccine takes some time to become effective, and may not provide immunisation against new strains of the virus.
If I am tested regularly outside college do I need to test for college?
If I have had a bus pass refund, will I still be able to travel?
The Spring Term bus refunds were for the 8 weeks where the college was closed. All bus routes will resume service on 8th March and Smartcards will be re-activated enabling you to travel. The bus provision will be the same as before Christmas - see our bus information page.
Face coverings must be worn at all times during your journey.
Do I wear my mask on the bus?
Yes. Public transport requirements still apply in terms of social distancing and mask-wearing, unless you have a medical exemption. All students without exemptions are expected to wear masks on College buses.
I am an Apprentice, when do I return?
Your training will now resume as it was before the current lockdown. There may be some exceptions to this where your training plan has altered but one of the teams delivering your apprenticeship should have communicated this to you already.