Support available over half term
The usual means of support are available to all students.
During half term, the same high level of student support is available to students.
All campuses will be closed from the end of the day on Wednesday 10 February and reopen on Monday 22 February. However, all the usual channels of support will remain available to students, including free school meals. Further details are outlined below and in a news article on the Student Hub.
The College would like to thank students for all your hard work and co-operation during this challenging period. Please look after the health of yourself and your loved ones over the half-term break.
Support from the Careers & Welfare team
Our Student Support and Careers & Welfare teams remain available to provide support and can be contacted via e-mail on firstname.lastname@example.org
We have also added direct contact details for colleagues who are available to you during working hours to the news item on Student Hub, where you’ll also find a list of people to contact if you have any safeguarding concerns.
In addition, if you have support needs outside of working hours you can go to the College website at tmc.ac.uk/student-life/support/useful-contacts where you will find more information on the support available and a list of ways in which we can help you.
You will also find a range of additional resources, including tips on looking after your wellbeing, on our In this Together content hub.
With the College currently providing an online delivery model, we understand there will be extra costs incurred when studying at home. To this end, and with immediate effect, for eligible students, we will be providing:
- Free school meals for 16-18 year olds: We are increasing the amount paid to £15.00 per week to cover the extra costs of home study to those students who are eligible for free school meals. This will be paid during the half term break and continue to be paid into a designated bank account from Monday 22 February.
- 19+ home study award: We will pay £15.00 per week to cover the extra costs of home study such as heating, lighting and children who are at home.
In some cases, students who do not have a bank account will be sent a Tesco Voucher. This is in exceptional circumstances only and all students are encouraged to open a bank account. We can also support you in setting up an easy to open bank account.
If you are not currently receiving support in any of these categories, but think you may be eligible or your circumstances have changed since you first enrolled with us, please contact us as outlined above. We are here to support you to get the support to which you are entitled.
Access to IT Equipment/Data
Some of you may be waiting for a device that was ordered before Christmas. We are continuing our work to ensure students who need a device to study from home can still access their course. If you do not have access to a device, then please let your tutor know and we will remove any barriers we can.
You may have heard that support is also available via the national mobile provider network to ensure students have access to sufficient data to enable them to access their course on-line. We can support with this and can also provide access to data should you require it to access your studies. Again, please let your tutor know or contact us as outlined above.
Library services and support for online learning
While our libraries are closed, their webpage has guides on everything you need for online learning from home including learning resources, subject guides and E books. The College is No. 1 College in the country for E Book use, which shows how useful they are – so please have a look at the resources available to you.
You can also find information on how to access your College virtual desktop (VDI) and guidance on how to access our remote learning offer. This will support your online learning by allowing you full access to the software and folders you use on campus.
You can also click this link for a series of helpful video guides, such as ‘An Overview of Microsoft Teams’ and accessing Office 365 or e-mail via the Student HUB.
If you need help or support, you can contact a member of the library team by email: email@example.com. The team aim to respond to any queries as soon as possible.
Access to On-Site Support
As outlined above, our Shena Simon campus will be closed from Thursday 11 February and reopen on Monday 22 February, to provide face-to-face support to vulnerable students throughout the lockdown period. We are reviewing the limited reopening of some of our other sites from 22 February and will contact you directly if you are being invited to attend either Shena Simon or one of our other sites after half term.
To ensure we can manage health and safety and prioritise those most in need of support, following the half-term break, the sites will not have open access, so our tutors and support teams will be directly in touch with students individually to advise them of these arrangements and invite them to sites for support.
If you feel like you would benefit from face-to-face support then please speak to your tutor or achievement/personal tutor in the first instance.
Support for your Wellbeing
Finally, these are undoubtedly difficult times, and some of you may feel like you need support, whether that be someone to talk to, or resources to look at. If you are struggling, we have partnered with experts to help you in complete confidence. The support pages of our website have a wealth of information, including useful pages on mental health and wellbeing Support | The Manchester College (tmc.ac.uk). You can also talk to one of dedicated Student Experience Support Team members and mental health first aiders – their contact details are available here Staying Safe at The Manchester College. If you are already supported by our team, then they will be in touch with you regularly during lockdown to check on your wellbeing and provide support.