CORONAVIRUS UPDATE FOR STUDENTS, APPRENTICES, PARENTS/CARERS AND EMPLOYERS – Tuesday 24th March 2020.

 

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In the light of the Prime Minister's announcement last night that we all need to stay at home, we have now moved to a new phase of operations for the College. 

 

With immediate effect, there will be no public access to the College Campus, other than for students with an EHCP or vulnerable learners in exceptional circumstances.

 

EHCP and vulnerable students who believe attending College is the safest thing for them to do should follow these instructions:

 

  • If students with an ECHP or vulnerable students need to access the College they must email in advance -  ALS@swindon.ac.uk - before 8:30 am on the day they intend to come into College to let us know. This is a very important new measure to ensure we best safeguard our staff. If you haven’t notified us in advance we will not be able to support you. Please note that given the very strict government message that we all need to stay at home we will only expect to see students in exceptional circumstances.

 

Please see the Government’s guidance for vulnerable children and young people - https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-vulnerable-children-and-young-people/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-on-vulnerable-children-and-young-people
 

  • Any students with a safeguarding concern can, and should, contact us on safeguarding@swindon.ac.uk and members of our Safeguarding Team will be available to help. 

 
For all other students and apprentices, we have moved to remote teaching and learning and access to the College Campus will not be permitted until Government guidance changes.
 
How remote learning works
 
Students and apprentices will be set work by their lecturers. Lecturers will be available to support the students remotely and will respond during normal working hours – so if they are having difficulty with anything they could email or call the lecturer who will aim to respond as quickly as possible. Evening classes as well as day classes will be delivered in this way.
 
For apprentices, planned assessment discussions and reviews will need to take place remotely through our online SMART Assessor system.  Assessors and apprentice coordinators will be in contact to make arrangements.
 
This will not affect or disadvantage our students as both face to face and online support have been made available and we are supporting students and staff to deliver programmes online through our learning platforms – Moodle and/or SMART Assessor.
 
To confirm, no classes will be delivered on the College site and all teaching and learning will be delivered online and remotely from now until we provide further notification.
 
If you have any difficulty accessing online and remote learning, please contact your tutor or assessor as soon as possible.  We want to do everything we can to ensure all of our learners are effectively supported during this difficult time.
 
Arrangements for Students who are eligible for free school meals
We have also confirmed arrangements for all students eligible for free school meals. Redeemable vouchers are being distributed to cover the next two weeks up to the Easter holidays. 
 
Exam arrangements
 
Examinations planned for the next two weeks and beyond have been postponed.  Unfortunately, no further information is available at this time regarding exams but updates will be posted on our website and shared through our digital platforms to students, apprentices, parents and employers.
 
How to contact Staff within the College
 
All staff will be continuing to work to support our students and apprentices, but will be doing so remotely.  They will be contactable directly via email and SC Connect and will be in regular communication.  If you do not have the correct contact email address for the staff member you would like to contact, please email: enquiries@swindon.ac.uk.  All emails will be picked up during normal College opening hours and we will ensure your message reaches the correct staff member as soon as possible so that they are able to email or call you directly. 
 
Messages left through the College’s telephone system will also be picked up and will be responded to.
 
Further updates
 
The wellbeing of all of our staff and students is our first priority and we will continue to keep you informed of any changes. We will do this via our usual communication channels, but please do check the website home page www.swindon.ac.uk regularly for further updates.
 
Thank you for your ongoing support
 
We believe these measures will enable us to still function well and allow us to maintain meaningful contact with our students and apprentices whilst complying with central government requirements.
 
Thank you and be safe.
 
With best wishes.
 
Steve Wain
Principal