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Coronavirus (COVID-19)

From week commencing 8th March, Bury College will start to return to face-to-face teaching. We are currently working through plans for the return dates for each group of students and will be in touch with our students via email to confirm in due course.

In line with Government guidelines, the College has put in place a range of safety measures to ensure the safety of all our students and staff at this time. The College has operated a ‘Covid Secure’ campus for a number of months, but there are now some additional measures that it is important for you to be aware of.

The wearing of face masks is now compulsory in all parts of College including in classrooms, unless a student is identified as exempt. Students will not be required to wear face masks when outdoors.

Testing for students and staff will take place in line with Government guidelines. More information regarding this process will follow.

Other safety measures that will remain in place include:

  • Zoned areas to allow social distancing between groups of students
  • One-way systems in place with floor markings, signage, and easily identifiable Campus Ambassadors to support
  • Additional cleaning and hygiene stations across the campus
  • Students will only come for timetabled sessions

Government guidance states that, Clinically Extremely Vulnerable students, are advised to not attend their FE provision, until 31st March at the earliest. This is because the risk of exposure to the virus may remain high. Provision will be in place for these students to continue to access their learning from home.

We will be communicating via email to students to let them know their return date and providing more detailed information regarding our Covid Secure arrangements.

 

Covid-19 absences - students should continue to notify the college by emailing CovidAbsences@burycollege.ac.uk if they have tested positive or are self-isolating with as much information as possible. The information we will gather for positive cases is:

  • when the symptoms started
  • when a test was undertaken
  • the result of the test
  • if there are any close contacts
  • the last date you were in College
  • if you were already self-isolating and for what reason

 

Students must wear face coverings in corridors and communal areas and in classrooms or workshops where social distancing cannot easily be maintained, except where exemptions apply. This does not apply in situations where wearing a face covering would impact on the ability to take part in exercise or strenuous activity, for example during sports lessons and physical activity. Face coverings do not need to be worn by students when outdoors on the premises.

 

Summer Exams 2021

The Secretary of State for Education has released information about how students will be awarded grades in summer 2021.

The government has decided that students will receive GCSE and A Level grades awarded and determined by teachers who will assess students on what they have been taught. No algorithm will be used.

Students studying some vocational and technical qualifications will also receive grades assessed by teachers for their exam units. Where exams and assessments are needed to demonstrate necessary professional standards in vocational and technical qualifications, they will continue.

The current deadline for submitting teacher assessed grades to the exam board is June 18th, 2021. It is therefore vital that students continue to attend lessons, complete work and undertake independent study/homework as normal up until teaching officially finishes in June.

We are currently awaiting more information from Ofqual and the exam boards, and as we formalise our internal processes for this summer’s teacher assessed grades, we will be sharing more detail with you over the coming weeks.

Please see below helpful guidance regarding awarding qualifications in 2021:

Information for students

In order to ensure the safety of our College community, we need the cooperation of all our students. Please click here to access the coronavirus factsheet and the expectations of our students.

 

Remote education for 16-19 students

The College will support remote learning using a number of different methods. Canvas Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) and Microsoft Teams are the key delivery platforms for remote learning and over the last term have been well utilised by staff and students. Staff and students will receive guidance and training in relation to the use of appropriate software and platforms to ensure a smooth transfer to remote learning.  A number of safety control measures are in place to ensure that both staff and students remain safe whilst using these platforms. All platforms and remote learning activity have been risk assessed in order to protect staff and students from the risks which they present.

Course delivery will follow a combination of remote and distance learning models dependant on the qualification requirements and the individual circumstances of the group/student.

Pastoral support will continue to be available for all students. Regular meetings will be held with curriculum teams and members of the pastoral and safeguarding teams to ensure swift identification of learners who may be at risk of harm or from disengaging from their learning to ensure that appropriate intervention can be put in place.

Safeguarding processes will continue to operate and all staff will be trained in the need to be alert to signs that a student is at risk of harm during period of lockdown. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will continue to be available and will be based on the College campus. Access to Additional Learning Support, and the Mental Health and Well being team continues to be available to students.

 

Remote education for Adult students

An effective model of blended learning (combination of online and face-to-face teaching) has been firmly in place since the beginning of the academic year (prior to current lockdown). This has enabled adult students to become accustomed to a level of remote (online) learning; and has provided a practical solution for students required to learn from home whilst at the same time maintain caring responsibilities.

All Adult students have access to the VLE and to Microsoft Teams for the purposes of learning. Staff have embraced technology and most are now fully conversant with the platforms used by the College.

Pastoral support will continue to be available for all students. Regular meetings will be held with curriculum teams and members of the pastoral and safeguarding teams to ensure swift identification of learners who may be at risk of harm or from disengaging from their learning to ensure that appropriate intervention can be put in place.

Safeguarding processes will continue to operate and all staff will be trained in the need to be alert to signs that a student is at risk of harm during period of lockdown. The Designated Safeguarding Lead will continue to be available and will be based on the College campus. Access to Additional Learning Support, and the Mental Health and Well-being team continues to be available to students.

 

Remote education for Apprentices

Learning and Skills Coaches will conduct training and assessment remotely for apprentices, this will include group and one-to-one sessions. In order to maximise progress, adjustments will be made to the sequencing of the apprenticeship to concentrate on knowledge acquisition with a return to practical learning at a later date. In line with awarding body requirements, Learning and Skills Coaches will also adjust assessment methods utilising methods which are conducive to remote delivery such as obtaining witness testimonials to replace direct observations.

Apprentices will continue to meet the 20% off-the-job training element by a range of flexible methods which are already in place and established on their programme. Where apprentices attend College on a day release timetable, this learning will be available remotely, utilising platforms including the VLE, Microsoft Teams and One File. Apprentices with SEND and those with difficulties in engaging in learning from their home can have access to learning on the College campus as agreed by members of the management team.

In collaboration with employers, Learning and Skills Coaches will continue to support their apprentices and progress reviews will continue remotely to ensure that knowledge, skills and behaviours continue to develop. Targets and actions will continue to be set accordingly and progress will be reviewed and monitored in accordance with expected end dates.

 

Delivery arrangements

There are a number of different approaches that will be used during this period of remote learning. Clearly, these differ by subject and level and depending on the circumstances. Some examples of our remote teaching approaches include:

  • Live teaching (online lessons) via Microsoft Teams
  • Recorded teaching (e.g. video/audio recordings made by teachers)
  • Printed paper packs produced by teachers and posted to students (e.g. workbooks, worksheets)
  • Textbooks and reading books students have at home or have access to electronically
  • Directed websites supporting the teaching of specific subjects or areas, including video clips or sequences
  • Long-term project work and/or research activities

 

Expectations of students

Remote learning expectations have been shared with students and students are expected to engage in all remote learning opportunities to ensure that they continue to make progress towards their educational objectives. Where students are unable to engage due to illness or other issues, they are expected to communicate this through the absence reporting protocols and registers will be marked accordingly.

Feedback on assessment will be provided by course teams but its nature will vary from course to course and be dependant on the nature of the submission.

The engagement and well-being of students will be monitored closely by curriculum, pastoral and safeguarding teams and those at risk of disengagement or harm will be swiftly identified and appropriate intervention put in place.

Students have been provided with tuition to ensure that they are aware of how to keep themselves safe online. This has been delivered through a variety of methods including tutorial and induction, letters to students and their parents and carers as well as promotion of the safeguarding team and its role.

The College have placed emphasis on supporting students to stay safe in the community and key messages have been delivered via tutorial and in supporting letters to parents and carers. The College continues to work closely with community partners to support our joint endeavours to keep students and the wider community safe.

The Campus Code of Conduct and Be Ready to Learn expectations are transferable to the remote learning offer. Students are expected to meet these behaviour expectations and where concerns are raised, this will be managed via the college Disciplinary process.

 

Arrangements for students studying courses that require specialist equipment or facilities

Where students require specialist facilities or equipment, or where they are required to work individually or in groups on practical tasks (such as in Art, Performing Arts, Construction, Sport and Science), this will be given careful consideration by course teams, and delivery models will be adjusted accordingly to ensure that the educational objectives can be achieved. Once the period of lockdown ends and face to face teaching resumes, subject teams will prioritise the delivery which requires specialist equipment or facilities.  

 

Support for students without devices, connectivity or suitable environment for home learning

The College will consider the individual needs of students carefully and all support will be based on individual circumstances and needs. The College has a limited number of devices that can be provided to students who have access to the internet but no learning device.

Stuents are encouraged to use other devices that they may have access to which enable them to access learning. These include gaming devices such as Xbox and Playstations. This method of access will be communicated with students.

The College is sensitive to the needs of individual students and recognises that some do not have access to the appropriate device or connectivity and/or may not live in a home environment which is conducive to learning. Students in this situation can access the College, utilising the LRC facilities to enable them to engage effectively in learning.

In the event that remote learning is not appropriate or presents significant difficulties, an efficient postal system is in place so as not to disadvantage any student.

A ‘Click and Collect’ service is in place to enable students to access library books and other resources.

 

Support for students with SEND

All students with an Education Health and Care Plan have been invited to attend College to enable support to be provided and ensure appropriate access to learning. Students with disabilities or learning needs who need to be in College to study effectively will be able to do so.

All students with an EHCP or SEND will continue to receive support through the specialist ALS team and will be allocated a key person to ensure that they are supported effectively during a period of remote learning or lockdown.

Students with SEND may have alternative methods of remote delivery dependant on their individual needs, for example paper-based materials will be sent out for some students.

Where applicable and appropriate, EHCP reviews will continue in agreement with the Local Authority, parent/carer and student.

 

Support for vulnerable students

All students identified as vulnerable, as per the government categories, have been invited in to college to continue their learning. Members of the College teams are sensitive to, and trained to identify vulnerabilities in students and this will be ongoing.

Different modes of attendance and support will be in place, dependant on student need and requirements to maintain safety on campus.

All students identified as vulnerable have an allocated key person who monitors their welfare weekly and is able to provide support and referral to other internal/external services as appropriate.

 

Further information

If you require further information about the College’s remote education offer, please email information@burycollege.ac.uk

 

Risk Assessment

Click here to view our risk assessment: http://sharepoint/sharedarea/Covid19RturnToWork/Shared%20Documents/Risk%20assessment%20Corona%20COVID-19%20%20overarching%20V1%20new%20year.docx

 

Support, Safeguarding and Welfare

Please follow the link below to our safeguarding and welfare information

https://burycollege.ac.uk/media/2698/safeguarding-and-welfare-leaflet.pdf

For more information on Covid-19 please visit the government website https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-government-response

Further updates from the Government will be issued and the College will update once they are available.

 

Latest updates:

  • For the latest updates from Public Health England please click here
  • To find out more from the World Health Organisation please click here
  • To use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service to find out what to do if you think you might have coronavirus please click here

 

Customer Announcement

The wellbeing and safety of our customers and visitors are of the utmost importance. Due to national circumstances regarding the coronavirus we are reviewing some of the activities at the college. We have chosen to take appropriate precautionary measures and close the Restaurant and Salon.

Please note – the Restaurant and Salon facilities will remain closed until further notice.

 

Community Learning

Please note, all learning workshops held in community venues have been cancelled as a precautionary measure until further notice.

 

What external support is available?

Bury Connexions are offering help and practical support during this difficult time. If you are aged 14-19 and need some support please call the young person’s helpline using the following details:

 

Bury Connexions Service

Young person’s helpline

0161 253 7733

Monday to Friday

10.00am-4.00pm

 

It is important to look after your mental health and wellbeing.

There are many services available to support students, parents and carers if you are struggling or want to make positive changes.

The NHS website is extremely useful and provides five steps to mental wellbeing:

  • Connect with other people
  • Be physically active
  • Learn new skills
  • Give to others
  • Pay attention to the present moment

The following link provides further details and practical advice: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/improve-mental-wellbeing/

 

Early Break

Early Break provides a confidential helpline for all residents in Bury who are experiencing difficulties with their mental wellbeing. The helpline is open to residents of all ages.

Call: 0161 464 3679

Visit: https://earlybreak.co.uk/what-we-do/emotional-health-wellbeing-services/getting-help-line/

 

Samaritans

Call: 116 123 (24 hours a day, free to call)

Email: jo@samaritans.org

Visit: www.samaritans.org

Please contact if you need to talk to someone or you think one of your family members is struggling.

 

The NSPCC (for parents and carers)

Call: 0808 800 5000 Email: help@nspcc.org.uk Visit: https://www.nspcc.org.uk/keeping-children-safe/support-for-parents/

The NSPCC is available to support parents or carers to talk about mental health problems.

 

Young Minds (for parents and carers)

Call the parents helpline: 0808 802 5544 (Monday to Friday 9.30am – 4pm, free for mobiles and landlines)

Visit: https://youngminds.org.uk/find-help/for-parents/

 

Mind

Call: 03001233393 (9am-6pm Monday to Friday)

Text: 86463 Email: info@mind.org.uk

Visit: https://www.mind.org.uk.

Mind provides resources and information around mental health as well as a local signposting service for further support.

 

Young Minds Information about Depression (for parents and carers)

Visit: http://www.youngminds.org.uk/for_parents/worried_about_your_child/depression

If you want to learn more about spotting the signs of depression, follow the link to a free 20-minute online course which aims to equip participants to know how and when to intervene if a person is at risk of suicide: https://www.zerosuicidealliance.com/

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