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Activate Learning and Covid-19

6 January 2021 update - latest Government guidance and exam information

In line with the Government’s announcement on 4 January, Activate Learning colleges will now temporarily close for onsite learning to all except students with additional support needs, children of keyworkers and those sitting exams in January.

Faculties will be in contact with students as soon as possible regarding arrangements for online lessons and timetables and further updates will follow this week. However, online timetables that were provided for the period between Wednesday 6 January and Friday 8 January will go ahead as scheduled.

If you have further questions, please contact your tutors in the first instance and thank you for your continued support.

Please find our latest information on our news section:

Here we’ll look to provide you with the most up-to-date information and will try to answer some of the more frequently asked questions we’ve had regarding your learning.

What will you need to do as a student when you’re coming into college?

If you’re a student with additional support needs or a child of a keyworker, you will still come into college for onsite learning. We ask that you:

  • Maintain social distancing around the campus
  • Wear face coverings in communal spaces around college
  • Ensure good hand hygiene through regular washing and use of hand sanitisers around college
  • Immediately self-isolate if you show any symptoms and report this to us as soon as possible

Please remember to wash your hands regularly throughout the day for at least 20 seconds at a time and use the hand sanitisers available.

And please remember to social distance. This really helps to reduce the spread of the virus and helps to prevent the impact when we get positive cases.

Student and staff wellbeing is our upmost priority, and we are doing everything we can to ensure as safe an environment as possible. Thank you all for your ongoing support and cooperation.

How do I access online learning?

Most students will now move to a remote-learning model. For some of you, this may be a newer experience having started in September and there may be some adjustment to this way of learning.

Please note, our teachers have done this before and we’re confident in our delivery of online learning. Online learning has previously been very successful and well received by students.

To avoid disruption to your education, your teachers will provide work for you via the college portals during this time. Please see the links for these below:

We want to reassure you that no one’s education will suffer as a result of these closures and teaching teams have rigorous plans in place to remotely support your classes and learning.

What’s happening with exams?

Activate Learning wants to ensure our students are given the opportunity to sit their exams after all the hard work and effort they’ve put in over what has been an incredibly challenging year. Having spoken to students, we know that many of them were keen to come in and do their exams and as we are able to support this safely we wanted to ensure they went ahead for these learners.

BTECs

However, we also recognise that there will be those learners who have worked hard and want to do the exams, but who feel anxious about the potential risk of doing so at this time. Today, our BTEC examination board Pearson issued new guidance that states that should students choose not to sit their exams at this time, they will not be disadvantaged. Therefore, we will continue to offer exams as originally planned for those wishing to attend, but we will also support those students who don’t feel able to attend to ensure that they achieve their qualifications.

In regards to other, non-BTEC exams that were due to take place during this latest lockdown, we still have no further guidance in relation to these and so as it stands, those exams are still proceeding without an option to not sit them. If this should change, and there are further updates, we will let you know.

AS, A Level and GCSEs

We are also aware that today the Government has announced AS, A Level and GCSEs will be awarded based on teacher assessments. We are awaiting further guidance on what this will look like for our students and we will update you as and when we have further information. 

We hope this news will help manage any concerns or anxieties anyone had, and we hope everyone continues to stay safe.

How are we managing COVID-19 cases at college?

We recognise that there may be some cases of COVID-19 on campus, so have a robust system in place to ensure we are able to isolate anyone who feels unwell, track and trace those they have come into contact with and communicate with them clearly what they need to do.

Our Student Safeguarding and Support team are managing any cases we might get and are happy to talk to people if they have any concerns. You can do this either by emailing safe@activatelearning.ac.uk or call 01865 550 401 between 8.30am and 5pm on weekdays.

How are you going to communicate further updates?

We will continue to communicate regular updates via email and text alert, so as to ensure you get the information you need.

We ask all students and parents to ensure their contact details are up to date with us so that you don’t miss any of these important updates. You can do this in the following ways:

  • By phone: 0800 612 6008
  • by email: admissions@activatelearning.ac.uk

In addition, students will also get regular updates from their tutors regarding their faculty areas and their studies.

Following the self-isolation rules

If you feel unwell and have symptoms of Coronavirus, you need to self-isolate and get yourself tested. Until you get the results of that test you should stay self-isolated.

If you get a positive test result, you will need to self-isolate for 10 days and ensure that others in your household self-isolate and get tested should they get any symptoms.

Likewise, it’s important that you self-isolate and stay away from college if someone in your household tests positive for COVID-19. Where you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, the Government’s guidance is that you need to self-isolate for 10 days and get tested if you get symptoms.

It’s really important that everyone follows the rules around self-isolation, as it helps prevent the spread of the virus and ensures everyone stays safe.

Letting us know if you've been affected by COVID-19

We want to keep everyone safe and so it’s really important that we are told if you are unwell or someone else in your house is unwell and you need to self-isolate. This allows us to track and trace cases in college and keep everyone informed of what’s going on, and more importantly what they need to do to keep safe.

You can let us know by speaking to someone in the Safeguarding and Student Support team, either via email at safe@activatelearning.ac.uk or by calling 01865 550401 between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Please note, that this is only relevant where students are coming into college. If you aren’t attending college and haven’t been onto campus, then you won’t need to inform us if you become unwell and test positive for Covid-19.

What additional support is available to students?

We know some of you will struggle during this third lockdown, and we will continue to offer help and support for those students not coming into college remotely.

If you need to speak to anyone about anything, our Safeguarding and Student Support team are on hand to support you. There are people there to help you whatever it is you’re going through, so please do speak to us.

Once again, we hope that you are enjoying being back in college more and we hope that you will work with us to keep everyone safe and well.

What do I do if I’m concerned about coming into college because of the risk?

We know the news of a third lockdown will cause anxiety for some of our learners and their families.

Every student is on a different learning journey and has different things in their personal lives that they need to consider, and because of this we are taking a very individualised approach to concerns.

Ultimately, we don’t want any of our students to be disadvantaged because of the current situation. When a learner who is entitled to attend college expresses concerns, we will carefully consider how we can support them.

It might be that you just need a little support from us to come into college, and if that’s the case then we can provide you with this – just let us know!

From helping you to manage your anxiety, to facilitating reasonable adjustments to class arrangements so you feel safe, we will listen to your concerns and try to do whatever we can to help you.

We think it is in the best interest of all our students who are entitled to come into college and attend their face-to-face lessons where this is possible.

What online resources do you have to support learning and wellbeing?

In addition to your learning via ALO and the wellbeing support from the Safeguarding and Student Support team, we’ve also put together the following resources and information online to support your learning and wellbeing:

Do you have a question that isn’t covered on this page?

If you have any questions that aren’t covered by the information on this page, please email communications@activatelearning.ac.uk and we’ll work to update this space with an answer for you.