Advice for Students / Parents/ Carers:
Dear Students / Parents / Carers,
I write to update you regarding the current Government guidance about the re-opening of schools and colleges across England and to advise you of our specific plans for our provision at Callywith College for the remainder of this academic year.
Since the imposition of lockdown measures, we have been solely focused on providing the best educational experience for our students. Therefore, during uncertain times for everyone, we took the proactive decision to take the college entirely online from Monday 23 March. The success of our remote delivery offer and the consistently high attendance and engagement rates with online delivery mean that now we aim, on the whole, to deliver in this way for the remainder of the current term. We could have re-opened our campus to year 12 students from Monday 15 June, however the current guidance would mean that each of our 700 Year 12 students would have had access to just 2 days on-site delivery over the last 3 weeks of the term as the guidance permits a maximum of only 25% of our year 12 cohort could be on site at one time. We feel that maintaining the high-quality, full-time online provision is in the best interests of both students and staff. Therefore, the instruction to the majority of our students is to keep doing what you are doing and we express our pride and thanks to you all (both students and parents alike) for your part in making this all possible. We are of course aware that for some families/individuals this may prove more challenging than for others and so for those students who need access to the college facilities over the next three weeks we are able to accommodate this by request. Students will need to arrange their own transport, bring a packed lunch, sign in and out at reception and pre-book arranged individual work stations via their PTL. Additionally, our Student Services staff are able to facilitate face-to-face non academic support meetings with students if remote alternatives are insufficient – these can be arranged by contacting the Student Services team by emailing email@example.com or calling 01208 224460.
We continue to monitor latest Government guidance and our priority continues to be the safety and wellbeing of our students and staff. I can assure you that whilst we continue to offer our full online provision we are also collectively doing all we can to ensure everyone is able to safely return to Callywith College for the start of the new academic year in September. Our deep cleaning programme continues, premises teams are installing social distancing measures and our teaching rooms and facilities are being maintained and readied for all eventualities. Our hope is that we will be welcoming in the new academic year with all of our students on-site full time. However, we have to accept that Government guidance on re-opening in September may change this. Therefore we are monitoring this situation carefully and have made clear contingency plans and enhanced the existing infrastructure should we need to offer a blended learning approach for students.
Further detailed advice will of course follow, both for current and prospective students, about the reopening of the College for the start of autumn term – one thing to note at this stage is that the first day of the autumn term for all 2nd Year A-level and Extended Diploma students will be Monday 7th September. Students starting the 1st year of their qualifications will begin with induction days spread across the 1-4 September and then will also start term fully on Monday 7th September. Thank you for your patience with this, as I’m sure you can appreciate, frequently changing guidance makes the information and communication of concrete planning a significant challenge at this time.
For our current first year students, their ‘Your Future Week’ is scheduled to go ahead as planned (just online now) from 22nd – 26 June, allowing students to focus on reviewing their academic progress and offer wellbeing advice and guidance on their next steps after College. I’m sure you’ll agree that it has never been more important to have these conversations with students and so our staff have worked incredibly hard to amend plans so as to re-create our highly successful your futures week to an online version. During the week all first year students will be off normal timetable and will have the opportunity to have an individual learning plan (ILP) 1:1 tutorial on Microsoft Teams with their tutor and engage in a range of other tasks and activities. Included are a variety of informative presentations, podcasts and videos about future progression opportunities, an amazing virtual careers fair of approximately 100 employers, virtual work experience opportunities and resources and guidance on starting university applications, apprenticeships research and gap years information. It all starts with a tutorial session at 9:15am on Monday 22nd June on Microsoft Teams with your Tutors.
To replace our HE/UCAS Information Evening for parents/carers, we have also put together some useful information on Higher Education opportunities and UCAS applications here.
For our second year leavers, you have worked so hard during your time at Callywith College and we so wish that we could have done more of the conventional things to celebrate your last days at the college. We are working on some ways to celebrate your success and achievements in the coming weeks but we also need to complete some logistical steps of our leavers process. Therefore, in line with all of the guidance about safe return to schools and colleges, we will be having a ‘socially distanced’ leavers process over the last week of term. We hope you will be able to arrange to complete this task as outlined here.
For students joining us in September, you may have read recently about the success of our launch of our Digital Campus and virtual Subject Spotlights which can be found on Facebook and Instagram for our future students, helping you to prepare to join us in September. We have received great feedback on these initiatives, with digital campus enrolment figures showing that future students are responding positively to these fantastic online resources.
May I take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support in studying from home or in providing help and encouragement to those doing so. We are acutely aware that for many students and their families these are anxious times. I hope this message not only highlights some of the work underway but also reassures you that everyone at the College remains committed to our values of student welfare and outstanding education for both our current and future students.
Further details on how the College is responding to the challenges posed by Coronavirus and the latest advice and guidance can be found below and by following us on social media.
Alternatively, if you have any questions you can call us on 01208 224000 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
I will of course keep all current and future students and their families updated with key dates and measures being taken by everyone at the College as soon as the guidance from the Government allows.
Dr Jon Grey
Advice for Staff & Students:
Updates and information on the College's position on the Coronavirus can be found on the College Intranet. This can also be accessed via the Remote Access link at the top of the screen. Use your College details to log in. You will see the current College Alerts pop up on screen after you log in.
Useful Information and Resources:
Higher Education/UCAS Information for Parents/Carers
Below are some Frequently Asked Questions that we hope will help reassure you:
If they have a new continuous cough or high temperature they should stay at home and self isolate for 14 days. You do not need to call NHS 111 to go into self isolation. If their symptoms worsen during home isolation or are no better after 7 days, contact NHS 111 online. If you have no internet access, you should call NHS 111. For a medical emergency dial 999.
Please contact the College through son/daughter’s curriculum secretary in the normal way to inform us of the absence.
Exams including GCSEs, AS levels and A levels will not go ahead this summer.
The exam regulator, Ofqual, and exam boards will work with teachers to provide grades to students whose exams have been cancelled this summer. Further information on the cancellation of GCSEs, AS and A levels in 2020 is available direct from the Department for Education.
Following current guidelines, planned trips and visits in England will be assessed on an individual basis. We respect the right of individuals to withdraw from any such trip. Planned residential visits abroad, planned to leave before March 31st have been cancelled following Government advice on school visits, on March 12th. Visits planned for beyond this date will be considered individually as things progress.
- By providing reassurance. It appears that people under the age of 20 are not as significantly affected by the virus as older people
- If your son or daughter has any concerns about their College work, please ask them to talk to their lecturers
- Encourage everyone to properly follow handwashing and personal hygiene precautions
- Make sure we have the most up to date contact details for you and your son or daughter
- Stay up-to-date with the official Public Health England and/or Central Government Announcements
- If you have any specific concerns please communicate them through your son/daughter’s Programme Team Leader
Regrettably we cannot invite students into the college for interviews due to the Government advice received on Monday 18 March to close schools and colleges. All interviews have been postponed and we will resume these after Easter via telephone interview.
Spaces are still available for September 2020, but please ensure to EMAIL application forms to email@example.com
If you have any queries regarding your College interview or applications in general, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with your email and telephone number and we will be in touch as soon as possible.