Coronavirus Updates and Risk Assessments

18 January 2021

The College has published its remote education provision, in accordance with government guidelines.

This can be found here: Remote Education Provision

6 January 2021

RE: Cancellation of vocational examinations during lockdown period.

We received guidance from the Department for Education yesterday evening, followed by further details from BTEC, which indicated that Colleges should decide for themselves whether or not they could conduct the examinations safely.

We have been given assurances that students will not be disadvantaged from not taking examinations, and it is clear from the feedback we have received today that this situation has put untenable pressure on students and their families, as well as on teaching staff and invigilators, during what is already a very stressful time.

With this in mind, and like the majority of other schools and colleges in the area, we have taken the decision to cancel all external vocational examinations during the lockdown period.

This applies to external vocational examinations only.

GCSEs and A Levels: The government has announced that GCSE and A Level examinations will again be cancelled this year. Further announcements are expected from the DFE and OFQUAL regarding to awarding of qualifications, and currently there are very few details of how this will be conducted.

However, current indications are that teacher assessments will be used as the basis for awarding grades at the end of the academic year. As such, we would like to confirm that A2 mock examinations will go ahead as planned during week commencing 25 January, and will be conducted remotely. These mock examinations will form part of any centre assessments used to determine final grades awarded for A Level qualifications this year.

For further information please see the latest update from OFQUAL here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/a-message-from-simon-lebus-chief-regulator-on-exams-in-2021

To all our students, we know that this is an unsettling time, especially for those of you due to complete courses and take examinations this year. We will ensure that we bring you up-to-date information just as soon as we have it. The best advice we can give you now is to continue to work hard, attend all lessons and maximise your efforts during the lockdown period. Vocational examinations may be scheduled for later in the year, and if teacher assessments are used as the basis for awarding qualifications this year, the quality of the work you put now will be reflected in your final grades at the end of the year. Keep going. We will be with you every step of the way.

5 January 2021

Following the prime minister’s announcement last night, we can confirm that the college will be closed until at least February half term.

Like the rest of the education sector, the College had no notice of closure prior to the prime minister’s announcement at 8:00pm last night. We are currently working as fast as we can to put all the necessary arrangements in place, but please bear with us while we work through everything we need to do set up teaching and learning and operations during the extended closure period.

We will be immediately moving to full remote learning until the College is able to reopen. Students should follow their regular timetable, but online. There may be some changes to subject timetables over the course of the lockdown period, and this which will be communicated to individual students where this is the case.

In line with Government guidance, the College will remain open for certain groups of students, primarily the children of critical workers, and vulnerable learners. The list of children eligible to attend College is detailed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision

Please note that during this time the College will be open for eligible learners to access College facilities through the LRC, but there will be no lessons taking place on site. All lessons will be conducted remotely, and teaching staff will be delivering teaching and learning from home. Furthermore the College bus services will not be running during the lockdown period, nor will there be any catering facilities on site. Therefore, we would ask you to only send your child into College if it is absolutely necessary.

We are not able to accept learners on to site unless this has been pre-agreed and pre-arranged. Therefore, if you or your children fit in to the categories highlighted in the Government guidance linked above, and you would like your son or daughter to attend College, please completed the form below, by 8th January. We will then contact you to confirm eligibility and arrangements.

As we enter the lockdown period there are many questions remaining unanswered, not least being the length of the lockdown period and how exams will be handled this year. We will update this webpage with the most up to date information as soon as we receive it.

5 January 2021

We are currently unable to run the majority of our Adult Leisure provision due to the current COVID-19 restrictions. Courses will run again once it is safe to do so.

In the meantime, why not browse our FREE distance learning courses: www.brock.ac.uk/adult/adult-education/distance-learning

4 January 2021

Further to our update of 31 December, I would like to confirm that classes resume tomorrow 5 January. As per current Government guidelines, all classes will operate remotely this week and follow the normal College timetable.

  • The College will remain open only for students who are unable to access learning remotely, children of key workers or holders of Education Health and Care plans. These students can use the College LRC facilities to access learning and can attend their remote classes from within the College. Access to the main College site is via a single door at the rear of ‘M’ block adjacent to the site office. Students must sign in and sign out in the book provided for access to the site.
  • The College bus services are not running during the week of 4-8 January and there are no on-site catering facilities. Students wishing to attend College must therefore make their own travel arrangements and ensure they bring their own food and drink.
  • Exams scheduled for the week of 4 January will go ahead as normal. Students will be contacted individually by curriculum teams regarding arrangements if they have an examination this week.

The College be setting up facilities to enable rapid Coronavirus testing to take place at College over the course of this week. We will provide further details in due course.

At the current time the schedule for reopening is as follows:

Week commencing 4 January: All classes run remotely.

Week commencing 11 January: Classes resume on campus for the following groups of students:

  • All second year students (A Level and Level 3 Vocational classes).
  • All students on one-year programmes (Level 1 and 2 vocational, GCSE and Functional skills classes), with the exception of Access to HE students and students at Ultima academy.
  • All students in foundation learning.

All other students will continue to learn remotely, and follow their normal College timetable.

Exams scheduled for the week of 11 January will go ahead as normal. Students will be contacted individually regarding arrangements if they have an examination this week.

All classes will follow the normal college/remote Monday timetable.

Week commencing 18 January: Classes resume on campus for all remaining students.

The College will continue to follow all Public Health England and Department for Education guidelines regarding the reopening of College to students. No doubt you will be well aware that the national picture is changing rapidly, and that guidance may change again over the next few days.

Further updates will be posted on this page.

31 December 2020

Following the Government announcements on 30 December regarding national changes to the start of the new term for schools and Colleges, we would like to confirm that teaching will recommence for all learners as originally planned on Tuesday 5 January.

All classes from 5-8 January will operate remotely, and follow the normal College timetable. A full update will be provided to students and parents on 4 January when the College reopens after the Christmas break.

18 December 2020

The College will be following government guidance regarding the staggered return of students to on-campus learning. This is designed to reduce the number of students physically attending classes during the first week of term. As such, the revised arrangements for the beginning of term are as follows:

Tuesday 5 January 2021: Classes resume on-campus for the following groups of students:

  • All second-year students (A Level and Level 3 Vocational classes).
  • All students on one-year programmes (Level 1 and 2 Vocational, GCSE and Functional Skills classes), except for Access to HE students.
  • All students in Foundation Learning.

Classes will follow the normal College timetable.

Tuesday 5 January 2021: Classes resume online for the following groups of students:

  • All first-year students (A Level and Level 3 Vocational classes).
  • Access to HE students.

These classes will follow the normal College timetable but will run online.

Week commencing Monday 11 January 2021: 

Classes resume for all students online (remote Monday) and on-campus as per the normal College timetable.

You may have also seen on the news that the government has also announced that Colleges will be asked to provide on-site testing facilities so that students and staff can be tested regularly at College. This will ensure that education for all is disrupted as little as possible.

The College is currently awaiting further information from Public Health England and the Department for Education with regard to details relating to the supply of testing kits, resourcing for testing and the logistics surrounding the administration of tests, including consent. We expect to have more information when we return in the new year and will provide an update in due course when the position is clearer.

May I wish you a safe and healthy Christmas and look forward to seeing you in the New Year.

4 November 2020

Following further clarification of government guidance regarding the new lockdown regulations that come into force from midnight on 5 November.

All students and parents need to be aware that this means that our students will be subject to different rules and regulations depending on whether they are on or off the College campus. While students will continue to come to College, attend classes and move around the campus as per the national DFE guidance and the College’s own COVID code of conduct policy, when off-campus all students will be subject to the national lockdown rules.

Specifically, I need to draw your attention to the following extracts from the latest government guidance published on 3 November.

Meeting others safely:

You can exercise or visit outdoor public places with the people you live with, your support bubble, or, when on your own, one person from another household.

Staying at home:

You can leave home to buy things at shops which are open, for instance for food and medicine, or to access critical public services.

Therefore, from Thursday 5 November all students must ensure they are following this additional guidance in order to ensure they are compliant with national restrictions:

  • When travelling to and from College ensure that they are not travelling in a group with more than one other individual. Students walking to or from the railway station must not be in groups of more than two and must maintain social distancing of two metres from other groups.
  • Currently we do not wish to ban students on main campus from leaving the site, however students should:
    • Only leave campus if absolutely necessary, and preferably only to go directly home.
    • Only enter Brockenhurst Village for the purposes of buying food or medical supplies as per national guidelines. We advise students to bring their own food and drink, or use the College facilities, which will remain open, whenever possible.
    • In both cases, students must not be in groups of more than two when outside the college campus and must maintain social distancing of two metres from other groups.

It is absolutely essential that all students are taking responsibility for their own actions, and they are adhering to these national rules as well as College procedures. This is to ensure that as an individual they are playing their part to stop the spread of COVID 19, and that the welfare of the local vulnerable community is considered and respected.

We will continue to review procedures on a constant basis, and the College will make changes if it feels this is necessary to ensure compliance and help protect the local community.

Finally, having met with the police today, they have confirmed that from 5 November, there will be increased patrols locally to monitor compliance with lockdown regulations, and there will be an increased policy of prosecution for those in breach of COVID regulations.

Please ensure that all the guidelines are followed to the letter. If the whole of the College community plays its part, then we will be able to maintain a safe and productive educational environment for all throughout the period of increased restrictions.

14 October 2020

Brockenhurst College has received funding for one year from the 16 to 19 tuition fund. This fund will be used by us to mitigate the disruption to learners arising from Coronavirus.

We will offer all our students who are studying English and Maths GCSE or Functional Skills additional catch up sessions. These sessions will be timetabled and will be delivered by our skilled English and Maths teams.

We will also be targeting learners who we believe would benefit from additional catch up sessions to support their vocational or A Level programme due to the loss of learning from COVID.

09 September 2020

Message from the Principal:

As you will be aware, the Government has now announced that social gatherings of more than six people will be illegal in England from Monday 14 September.

Whilst schools and colleges are exempt from the new legislation, the College wants to help support the Government intentions in keeping the number of coronavirus infections as low as possible.

The College is a COVID secure environment with a comprehensive range of measures in place to keep us all safe. This means that we are able to teach you in your normal class environment.

In addition, in communal areas outside of the classroom we also ask you to wear face coverings, unless exempt, and carefully maintain social distancing.

Given the new rule of no more than six in a social gathering now being introduced by the Government, we also want to encourage and support all of our students to develop these safe habits. This will help you inside and outside of College and add an extra layer of safety whilst you are in College.

So we will be asking you to comply with the following additional measures:

  • In all social spaces inside or outside our college building to meet in no more than group of six, again carefully maintaining social distancing between each individual or group.
  • If you need to go into the village you should go on your own or in a very small group of no more than four, as detailed in the Student Code of Conduct COVID-19, carefully maintaining social distancing from each other and from members of the public.
  • As you must wear a face covering if you want to go into a shop in the village we encourage you to wear your face covering at all times whilst in the village. This would be especially helpful for our elderly and more vulnerable members of our local community.
  • When walking to and from the railway station to be in a very small group of no more than four, carefully maintaining social distancing between each individual and small group. We would also recommend that you continue to wear your face coverings on that short walk.

The College will be updating the requirements of our Student Code of Conduct COVID-19 to reflect the above measures and I know you will do everything possible to continue to help us keep our College community as safe as we possibly can.

If your son/daughter has tested positive for COVID-19, please call 01590 625503 asap to report this.

But please only call in the instance of a positive test result for COVID-19.

19 June 2020

Areas for Covid-19 responses and procedural updates:

COVID-19 – Overall Plan – 28 May 20

Freshers Week 25 June – 2 July 2020

We are delighted to announce that Freshers’ Week will be run online from 25 June to 2 July.

Each day we will release new content for you to enjoy.

This will include:

  • A virtual tour of the College, including classrooms.
  • A welcome message from each Head of Curriculum.
  • Bite-sized online lessons from our teachers.
  • Virtual talks on Enrichment, Enrolment, Academies, the Student Ambassador Scheme and more…
  • Live Facebook and Instagram Q&A sessions.

We very much look forward to welcoming you online shortly.

Adult Leisure Courses – 8 June 2020

Lymington and New Milton Centres:

All Adult Leisure classes are now cancelled until the start of the new academic year in September.

Centre staff will be contacting students to refund any outstanding tuition fees.

We are planning to restart Adult Learning and Skills classes from September when we will be able to advise you of the options available in line with any Government measures.

If you wish to express an interest in any of our classes, please contact us at leisurecourses@brock.ac.uk so that we can keep you fully informed.

Message from the Principal – 3 April 2020

Ofqual announcement – grading for A levels and GCSEs

I am pleased to confirm Ofqual has published details of how A Level and GCSE grades will be awarded this summer. This guidance applies to GCSE, AS and A Levels, Extended Project Qualifications and Advanced Extension Awards in Maths.

Vocational courses such as BTEC and Cambridge Technical programmes and other similar qualifications are being dealt with separately. Ofqual is working urgently to develop an approach for these programmes and will provide further information as soon as possible.

Below are the links to the published documents from Ofqual that summarise the process.

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/877830/Letter_to_students_-_Summer_2020_grading.pdf 

Summer 2020 grades for GCSE, AS and A level, Extended Project Qualification and Advanced Extension Award in maths.pdf

Although this is an anxious time, please can I ask that you do not contact the College or teachers regarding assessed grades. Ofqual has provided clear guidance to institutions prohibiting interference in the process in order to protect the integrity of teachers’ judgements. We will therefore not be allowed to share the teacher-assessed grades with you at any point.

Ofqual will issue further guidance in the coming months and we will make sure we share any relevant details with you at the earliest opportunities.

With very best wishes,

Di Roberts CBE

Principal

Message for applicants - 24 March 2020

We are still taking applications for 2020-21 and would normally hold face-to-face interviews.  However, as a result of the Coronavirus measures, we are adopting different methods.

We will conduct interviews by telephone once you have successfully submitted your application through the website and booked an interview slot.

Our helpful and knowledgeable Progression Advisors will then contact you at your scheduled time. You will speak with either Steve, Jacqui, Adrian, Lisa, Amanda, Tracey or Wendy. Your parents/guardians/carers are also able to join the interview if you wish.

Please note, the telephone number will not display, appearing as ‘no caller ID’. Your parents/guardians/carers are welcome to join the interview.

Despite the current uncertainty, please be assured that your place at Brockenhurst College will be secure. At Enrolment, we will ensure you receive the correct information and guidance to confirm your study programme for the upcoming academic year.

We look forward to seeing you soon.

Message from the Principal - 19 March 2020

As you know, the government has announced that schools, colleges and nurseries will close from Friday afternoon for all children and young people, apart from those deemed vulnerable and those from families containing a ‘key worker’.

Later today, the government will publish a list of roles that fall under the term ‘key worker’. If your parent or guardian is in this category, and they wish you to attend college, please ask them to contact the Principal’s office on 01590 625503 or jgreer@brock.ac.uk.

In addition, the College will contact any young person we feel may be vulnerable, as well as students with EHCPs, to discuss what they would like to do.

For all other students, the College will now support learning remotely. This will ensure everyone can continue to develop the knowledge and skills for meaningful progression.

Remote learning initiatives will serve first year students progressing onto year two next year, one-year students progressing on to the next level next year, and second-year students moving onto university, an apprenticeship or employment.

Please note, we will send out detailed instructions and guidance on remote learning early next week. We will also be available throughout this period to provide advice, guidance and emotional support.

It was further announced yesterday that GCSE and A Level exams, among other qualifications such as BTECs with external assessment, will not take place this year. I understand that this uncertainty is difficult, but please try not to worry.

The government has been clear that students will still be able to achieve their qualifications within a set of rules that will be announced shortly. Once we have been given clear guidance about how this will work, we will explain the detail.

I know this may all feel like an unsettling experience. However, we will do absolutely everything in our power to help and support you to succeed despite these unique challenges.

If you have any further queries, please contact enquiries@brock.ac.uk 

With kind regards,

Di Roberts CBE

Principal

Adult and evening courses

Functional skills, Teaching and Counselling evening courses – Brockenhurst Campus

Classes are cancelled from 23rd March for the foreseeable. Tutors will contact you directly to outline plans for next steps, including providing you with the necessary access to be able to study remotely.

Quickstart – Provision for the Unemployed

Courses are cancelled from Monday 23rd March until further notice. Courses scheduled after this time will be reviewed shortly and we will update you accordingly

Distance Learning Courses

These courses can all be completed on-line and therefore will continue as normal.

Student work placements

Please note ALL work placements are cancelled until further notice.

Useful numbers

Main Reception: 01590 625555

Principal’s Office: 01590 625503

Student Services: 01590 625555 ext. 162

General student absence line: 01590 625530

Further Information

More information about the coronavirus can be found on the Public Health England website, which is being updated continuously.

Information for those returning from travel or visitors arriving in the UK from certain overseas locations, with or without symptoms, can also be found on the PHE website.