Coronavirus response update - 28.04.20

28 April 2020

Coronavirus response update 28th April 2020

I hope this email finds you well and that all your family members are safe and healthy.

A few updates

Over the past week, we have been waiting for more information from the Department for Education about the details of the laptop and 4G scheme announced by Gavin Williamson Sunday last. Unfortunately, as a post 16 provider, we are not eligible for the Department for Education free issue scheme. However, we have been tasked with using our own bursary funding to provide eligible students with laptops or tablets, and 4G connections. We will be looking at the criteria this week and will identify those students who may be eligible by Friday. Please do not contact the college about eligibility for this scheme. We plan to send an email to the identified cohort asking whether they have access to a laptop, PC or tablet in the household and whether they have internet access. This will only be open to those students who are in the A1 / Level 2 year; A2 students are not eligible. Students classed as vulnerable (i.e. they have a social worker) should be provided for by the local authority. The information will then be used to identify who will receive a laptop or tablet and / or internet access through a 4G connection. All laptops, tablets and 4G routers remain the property of the college and must be returned once schools and colleges return.

We have been asked by a number of students about organising an end of year celebration or prom to mark the end of their time at college. We think this is an excellent idea, but cannot commit to date or format at this time, as we are unsure about the date when social distancing rules will be lifted. We will keep you posted.

The Department for Education is promoting a number of free courses which are available through a new online platform, the Skills Toolkit. This platform signposts to free, high-quality digital and numeracy courses to help people build up their skills, progress in work and boost their job prospects and confidence whilst at home. Courses on offer cover a range of levels, from everyday maths and the use of email and social media at work to more advanced training. All courses are available online and are flexible so that people can work through them at their own pace. The Skills Toolkit can be accessed here:

And finally, another thank you to all members of the college community who participated this morning in the national minute’s silence for keyworkers in the NHS and Health care sectors. I’m sure you were also thinking about all those who have lost their lives to this disease from all walks of life. We can only hope that the worst is over and better times are yet to come. Our hearts go out to anyone affected by this virus; I’m sure you will join me in wishing everyone connected to the college or otherwise, the best of health.

That’s it for today

Take care, look after yourself, your families and each other; be patient and stay positive.