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Update following new lockdown restrictions

College campuses remain open.

With new nationwide lockdown restrictions coming into force yesterday (5 November 2020) to help tackle the Covid-19 pandemic, the government has now issued new advice and guidance for educational settings that will apply for the next four weeks. Please note that, at the time of writing, it is our understanding that these measures will end with lockdown on December 2, although we are sure you will appreciate that this is subject to change.

There is different guidance for 16-18 year olds at College compared to adult students so we have outlined the detail below.

Information for 16-18 year olds Further Education students at The Manchester College

Our campuses will remain open throughout the duration of lockdown and we will be continuing to provide you with a blended learning experience where you will have a mix of on campus and online lessons. As such there are no changes to your current timetable associated with lockdown and it is essential that you continue to attend all your lessons, whether they be face-to-face or on-line.

We will though be making the following changes following Government advice:

  • You must now wear face coverings in all campus areas – including the College libraries. The only exceptions are:
  • You do not need to wear a face covering during face to face, on campus , classroom or workshop lessons (unless is is required PPE, for example, in Hair and Beauty lessons) 
  • Or while sitting down to eat or drink in one of the College refectories
  • Or if you have an exemption. More details here.
     
  • If you have been previously told you are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable and have not yet received a new letter from the NHS, you need to consult with your GP/clinician to obtain advice on if this still applies to you. If your GP/clinician confirms you are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable you must stay at home and not come to campus during the period of national restrictions. You should inform your Achievement Tutor and they will make arrangements for you to continue accessing your course remotely during the lockdown period
     
  • As we have previously committed, we are working to find ways of increasing the amount of time that students spend on campus in a safe, secure and welcoming way. This review is underway and we update you in due course.
     
  • If you are due to attend a work placement during the next four weeks, we will contact you individually to provide you with an update on any changes.

Reducing the spread of Covid-19

All of our existing Covid-19 prevention measures, including 2metre social distancing, the wearing of face coverings in communal areas, one way systems and hand sanitizing facilities will be remaining in place.

As a result of our students’ high compliance with these measures on campus, the number of positive cases in the College has remained manageable to this point.  We have been able to quickly isolate individuals where needed and minimise the number of people that are required to self-isolate. As such we are confident that these measures have been effective at preventing the spread of the virus on campus and the evidence we have gathered suggests that any positive cases in the College have largely been passed in settings in the community/home

Information for Adult Learners at The Manchester College

Government advice is that for adult education, colleges should consider moving to online teaching where possible to do so while still achieving educational objectives

We are currently reviewing this latest government guidance and assessing which courses we can move online and which ones will need to maintain an element of face to face delivery. Should you have a scheduled external examination or assessment during this period you will still be invited onto campus to complete this.

The change to government guidance was announced at very short notice and we are working to complete this assessment as quickly as possible. We will endeavour to have communicated any changes to you before your next scheduled face to face session on campus.

Please note that should you come to campus you will be required to wear a facemask at all times (apart from in lessons or when eating/drinking) unless you have an exemption under government guidance.

Finally, if you have been previously told you are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable and have not yet received a new letter from the NHS, you need to consult with your GP/clinician to obtain advice on if this still applies to you. If your GP/clinician confirms you are Clinically Extremely Vulnerable you must stay at home and not come to campus during the period of national restrictions. You should inform your Tutor and they will make arrangements for you to continue accessing your course remotely during the lockdown period.

Reducing the spread of Covid-19

All of our existing Covid-19 prevention measures, including 2metre social distancing, the wearing of face coverings in communal areas, one way systems and hand sanitizing facilities will be remaining in place.

As a result of our students’ high compliance with these measures on campus, the number of positive cases in the College has remained manageable to this point.  We have been able to quickly isolate individuals where needed and minimise the number of people that are required to self-isolate. As such we are confident that these measures have been effective at preventing the spread of the virus on campus and the evidence we have gathered suggests that any positive cases in the College have largely been passed in settings in the community/home.

Maintaining a safe, secure and welcoming learning environment

We understand that these changes have been introduced at very short notice and apologise for any inconvenience. However, we have to adopt government guidance as and when it is issued to us. We will communicate any changes to you as quickly as possible but please remain patient as we deal with a rapidly evolving situation.

We fully appreciate that these are challenging and worrying times but please rest assured that we are taking every step possible to maintain a welcoming and safe learning environment while keeping the health, safety and wellbeing of our students and our staff, our number one priority.


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6th November 2020