Please see HCUC's (Harrow College and Uxbridge College) latest advice on Coronavirus (COVID-19) for students and staff here.

 

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Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update
w/c 15 June 2020

The Government has partially relaxed the lockdown and from 15th June 2020 a very limited number of students may return to campus. Some Awarding Organisations (AO) have confirmed there are a minority of qualifications that require students to come onto campus to successfully complete and achieve their course.  Where this is the case, the parents/carers and students will receive/have received a separate letter

HCUC have produced a COVID 19 Guide for students to follow if asked to come to College. Note - the majority of students will not be required to come into College for the remainder of this term and this allows the College to very carefully limit student numbers on the premises, to ensure safety priorities are adhered to, in line with Government advice and independent Public Health & Safety Executive guidance. This guide should be with students prior to their coming into College.

If you have any questions regarding this guidance or about how qualifications are being assessed that are not covered on the website, please contact the course tutor.

 

Campuses will have changed significantly since lockdown was called. All entering the building must maintain social distancing and sanitise their hands before moving into a building. Risk Assessments have been conducted for each subject area with appropriate PPE made available where needed. You are not required to wear a face covering in College but may choose to do so if that is your personal wish. Those travelling by public transport must adhere to the Government directive regarding face coverings. You must wear one on public transport, more detail is given in the general information section of this message.

Signage and barriers have been erected for safety and must be obeyed. Toilet facilities are available with social distancing and a concentration on hand washing and sanitisation.

Exam Cancellations

The COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in GCSE, A Level and vocational qualification exams being cancelled. Ofqual have announced that Functional Skills and many Vocational and technical qualifications (alongside A-Levels and GCSEs) will now be provided a centre assessment grade. Updates to the approach to ESOL are yet to be confirmed.

Further details are provided below:

1. A Level & GCSE students
Ofqual have recently written to all A Level & GCSE students - please click here to read the letter . The COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in GCSE, A Level and vocational qualification exams being cancelled. Students and colleges have been advised of the national approach to 2019/20 assessments & exams affected by COVID-19. You will now be aware of the centre assessment grade approach and a subsequent statistical standardisation process. While this headline approach is now
clearer, the College now awaits the feedback from a national consultation on details on the process to submit centre assessment grades.  Should a teacher ask you to submit any work that was due before the COVID 19 lock-down (terms 1 & 2) then please do. Unfortunately, your teacher cannot, under any circumstances, share the centre assessment grades nor the rank order of students with students, or their parents/carers or any other individuals outside the centre, before final results have been issued.

2.   Vocational and technical qualifications (VTQs) including BTECs, Cambridge Technicals, & UAL Diplomas
The College is pleased to confirm that, as with A Levels, there will be a centre assessment grade approach (and similarly for some VTQs a further statistical standardisation process). Again, the College awaits details on the process to submit centre assessment grades.

Please note, Ofqual have reiterated that a centre assessment grade will not be “appropriate” for some VTQs (such as those designed to support progression straight into employment and signal occupational competence). A list of these qualifications will follow where some “adapted assessments or delivery models’’ will still be required.These details are still being finalised.

W
hile this headline approach is now clearer, the College now awaits the feedback from a further national consultation on details on the process to submit centre assessment grades. Should a teacher ask you to submit any work that was due before the COVID 19 lock-down (terms 1 & 2) then please do- this will be in support of your calculated grade. Unfortunately, your teacher cannot, under any circumstances, share the centre assessment grades nor the rank order of students with students, or their parents/carers or any other individuals outside the centre, before final results have been issued.

3.   Functional Skills
We are equally pleased to announce that functional skills students will (as with GCSEs) be allocated a centre assessment grade (again, with a further statistical standardisation process). As with the above, the College awaits details on the process to submit centre assessment grades.

There are more details available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/awarding-vocational-and-technical-qualifications-this-summer

Ongoing lessons for English & maths students are key to your progression and knowledge for next year and these will continue for the remainder of the academic year. Students will continue to engage in these to be best prepared for their next steps.

4.   ESOL
No further details have been released on the national approach to ESOL. We are expecting updates imminently. We continue to be in regular contact with Awarding Bodies and government agencies to ensure we are well-informed. HCUC (Harrow College & Uxbridge College) students are enrolled onto a wide range of qualifications across a number of Awarding Bodies and we are working to safeguard that no student is disadvantaged.

Please be assured that we will update all students when we have more details.

Cancellation of Commercial Courses

For those undertaking commercial courses the College will be issuing refunds for all commercial courses due to start in the summer term. Applicants will be contacted to have an early opportunity to re-enrol on to these courses when the normal College business resumes.

If you are already enrolled on a course which is due to finish at the end of this academic year, your course administrator will contact you separately to make local alternative arrangements to support you in the completion of your course.

For any other queries regarding commercial courses, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Thank you for your co-operation.

Civic Duty – Volunteering

The College has donated equipment to both the NHS and care homes in the communities close to Uxbridge, Harrow and Hayes. There is further work planned to support these caring organisations in the near future. The College also has examples of individual cases of volunteering from both staff and students, well done to all of those that have volunteered.

Further Information

Wearing a Face Covering

From 15 June 2020 you must wear a face covering if you need to use public transport.This will mean you can be refused travel if you don’t comply and could be fined.

A face covering is not the same as a face mask or surgical mask. It means the kind of face covering you can easily make at home. If you already possess a mask then you may use it. It is important that we do not deplete key PPE, such a surgical masks or respirators, which are designed to be used by healthcare and other workers for clinical settings

The government set out advice for people on how to make their own face coverings easily at home, using scarves or other textile items. These face coverings should cover the mouth and nose while allowing the wearer to breathe comfortably and can be as simple as a scarf or bandana that ties behind the head to give a snug fit.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/how-to-wear-and-make-a-cloth-face-covering/how-to-wear-and-make-a-cloth-face-covering

 
Wash your hands or use hand sanitiser before putting it on and after taking it off. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth at all times and store used face coverings in a plastic bag until you have an opportunity to wash them. You should wash a face covering regularly. It can go in with other laundry, using your normal detergent.

You should be prepared to remove your face covering if asked to do so by police officers and police staff for the purposes of identification.

 
Useful Weblinks

The Government have issued a one-stop shop link that gives access to all Covid-19 related information. It gives FAQs that appear to cover all the other Government webpages we supply and more. In addition, the final line gives advice on how people can sign up to receive automatic Gov.uk updates:

https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus

The following links may be useful in supplying further information:


 - UK Government and Ofqual updates on qualification assessment – these will be updated as new information is provided:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/statement-on-vocational-and-technical-qualifications-in-2020

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-cancellation-of-gcses-as-and-a-levels-in-2020/coronavirus-covid-19-cancellation-of-gcses-as-and-a-levels-in-2020#might-the-exams-be-reinstated-if-the-coronavirus-covid-19-is-not-as-bad-as-expected

 - Stay at home guidance for households with possible coronavirus (COVID-19) infection:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-people-with-confirmed-or-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection


 - Guidance on social distancing and for vulnerable people:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/full-guidance-on-staying-at-home-and-away-from-others/full-guidance-on-staying-at-home-and-away-from-others



 - Mental Health Guidance

https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/coronavirus-and-your-wellbeing/#collapsefb4eb

https://www.studentminds.org.uk/coronavirus.html

-General Heath Guidance

https://www.myhealthhillingdon.nhs.uk/campaigns/support-and-advice-booklet-during-covid-19/



Darrell DeSouza
Group Principal and CEO 
HCUC (Harrow College & Uxbridge College)

 

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