Coronavirus (COVID-19) status updates

Current information as of 11th January 2021: the college has revised its plans and taken the decision not to re-introduce face-to-face delivery in any of its subject areas until late January at the earliest and possibly later. The college is therefore closed to students.

Please see below for full details issued by the Principal, David Dowdles, on 11th January 2021. We ask that you check this website regularly for notifications of any changes that may happen at any time.

If you have any queries regarding your course or timetable, please click here for staff contact details.

 

 

11th January 2021

Dear Apprentices and Students,

Delivery of College Courses During Lockdown – IMPORTANT UPDATE

As intimated in recent correspondence the first priority in the current climate has to be the safety and well-being of both staff and students.

With the above in mind, and considering some of the wider advice and information available, the College revised its original plans and took the decision not to re-introduce face-to-face delivery in any of its subject areas until late January at the very earliest and most probably later.

Providing you with excellent specialist education is our main objective. We will endeavour, as outlined in my earlier letter, to deliver teaching on-line as far as is possible to certain groups of students, with priority given to students in examination/assessment groups.

The online-learning we are planning to deliver during the coming weeks will be carefully planned by each Department and the respective tutors. Your tutor will be in touch with you regularly with updates, materials and detailed information relating to your programme of study.

Please also be assured that the College will do its utmost to ensure that, if it deems it necessary and appropriate, lost teaching time can be made up as far as it is possible to do so.

Further detailed plans around the phased return to face-to-face teaching, including when respective groups are likely to return and taking account of any updated information available from the Government, will be shared via the website, social media and tutors. Please check the College website and your e-mails regularly for any updates.

For now, however, can I ask you please to note the following important points:

• Students and apprentices will have deadlines for the completion and submission of work set by tutors. Please ensure that you observe those deadlines. This will help tutors enormously with their already complex planning schedules;

• Do ensure that you engage with and respond to your tutors at all times, as agreed. We will be reporting back to employers and parents, as appropriate, and will inform them in instances where students have failed to meet deadlines set by tutors or have failed to respond to calls from tutors, the counsellors or other College staff;

• Please ensure that, in anticipation of any on-line sessions, you have checked and, if necessary, reset your password. This will avoid using up valuable staff and lesson time having to do this;

• Tutors and staff will be in regular contact with employers regarding the progress of individual apprentices. Where relevant, matters around on-site practical experience will be discussed and agreed with employers as well as the allocation of appropriate study time for apprentices who, whilst unable to attend College, are expected to be at their respective place of work on days when they would have been at College;

• For those students about to undertake EPAs, you will be directed to focus on theory tests in order that those tests can be completed at the earliest possible opportunity;

• If you have difficulty accessing computing facilities please do let the College know as it may be possible to provide assistance in this regard;

• College counsellors will be contactable and available, by arrangement, to offer you support and advice. They can be reached as indicated below:

Sarah-Louise.Robson@thebcc.ac.uk
Faye.Ogden@thebcc.ac.uk

• Please do ensure that you adhere to College policy with respect to IT usage. Do also follow the link below for guidance around staying safe on line and general cyber security:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/covid-19-staying-safe-online

We recognise that this is a uniquely challenging time for everyone. It is regrettable that the situation requires us to keep our buildings closed, but your health and safety and that of the BCC community as a whole have to be our priority. Please help us to facilitate your learning by following the guidance above and by actively engaging with your tutors and College staff.

Thank you for your support and understanding. Stay safe and well.

Yours sincerely,

David Dowdles

 

 

Previous correspondence from the Principal below:

 

4th January 2021

Dear Colleagues, Students, Apprentices, Employers, Parents and Guardians,

Return to College January 2021- IMPORTANT UPDATE

As intimated in recent correspondence the first priority in the current climate has to be the safety and well-being of both staff and students.

With the above in mind, and considering some of the wider advice and information now available, the College has revised its plans and taken the decision not to re-introduce face-to-face delivery in any of its subject areas until late January at the earliest and possibly later.

We will endeavour, as outlined in my earlier letter, to deliver teaching on-line as far as is possible to certain groups of students, with priority given to students in examination/assessment groups.

Once again, please be assured that the College will do its utmost to ensure that, if it deems it necessary and appropriate, lost teaching time can be made up as far as it is possible to do so.

Further detailed plans around the phased return to face-to-face teaching, including when respective groups are likely to return and taking account of any updated information available from the Government, will be shared via the website, social media and tutors. Our counsellors will also be available to offer support and advice.

We recognise that this is a uniquely challenging time for everyone. It is regrettable that the situation requires us to keep our buildings closed, but the health and safety of the BCC community as a whole have to be our priority.

Thank you for your support and understanding and, again, may I urge you to please check the College website and your e-mails regularly for any updates.

Yours sincerely,

David Dowdles

 

2nd January 2021

Dear Students, Apprentices, Employers, Parents and Guardians,

Phased Return to College January 2021

This brief message comes with the hope that you have managed to enjoy a restful Festive Season and with all good wishes for a happy, safe and prosperous 2021.

This is the first of a number of communications that you will be likely to receive in the coming days and I would urge you to check your e-mails and the College website regularly for any updates.

You will understand that, in light of the Government’s announcements late on the afternoon of the 30th December, the situation around our return gives rise to many questions.

At this juncture, and in order that we can afford ourselves sufficient time to plan appropriately, revisit our safety protocols in light of the new arrangements announced by the Government (particularly with regard to the newly proposed expectation of on-site testing) and ultimately share as much information as possible with colleagues, employers, parents, apprentices and students, we anticipate a phased return to College over the coming weeks provisionally as follows:

Monday 4thJanuary and for the entire week

The College will not be open to any students in any subject area. There will be no face-to-face teaching during the week beginning the 4th January.

Tuesday 5thJanuary

Delivery is anticipated to start on-line for a small number of learners where appropriate and possible to do so. Priority will be given to students in examination/assessment groups.

Monday 11thJanuary

Face-to-face teaching may, where appropriate and possible to do so, begin on a phased basis for selected groups only with the remainder of students continuing to learn on-line where possible. Priority will be given to students in examination/assessment groups.

Monday 18thJanuary

All learners should, according to the current Government guidelines, be able to return to College for face-to-face teaching.

Please do be aware, however, that all of the above may be subject to change according not only to Government advice but also to any decision the College itself wishes to take recognising that the first priority must be the safety and well-being of both students and staff.

Further detailed plans around this phased return, including when respective groups are likely to return and taking account of any updated information available from the Government, are being drawn up and will most likely be shared via the website, social media and tutors in the coming days.  Again, can I urge you to check the College website and your e-mails regularly for any updates.

Please be assured that, where the current situation results in any lost teaching time, the College will do its utmost to ensure that, if it deems it necessary and appropriate, this can be made up as far as it is possible to do so.

Staff are due back in College on Monday 4th January or during that week as per their usual individual timetables. However, this will be subject to on-going review. Depending on any modifications to their respective timetables and the College’s wider plans, they should be available to help address any questions from students, employers and parents/guardians.

Other Matters
The College Management Team has been meeting to consider, amongst other matters, how we will manage the Government’s newly announced expectation that we deliver on-site testing of both staff and students and how we will respond in cases of a positive test. Further information around this will be shared in due course.

Whenever we return to College, key to our safety will be the observance of all the protocols around wearing of masks, social distancing, keeping to the one-way system etc. as outlined in earlier correspondence. I would urge everyone to remind themselves of these protocols and of our collective responsibilities in this regard.

We, like all educational institutions, do not have all the answers and the information currently available on the Government’s website seems subject to some degree of interpretation. We will, however, do our best to communicate to the BCC community as much information as possible but always recognising that there are likely to be on-going, and perhaps frequent, last-minute changes that need to be accommodated.

Thank you for your efforts, support and understanding as we try to navigate, as best we can, these very challenging times.

Yours sincerely,

David Dowdles