General update 27th August

It is clear that testing will remain crucial through the autumn term. The continued reporting of data through NHS Test and Trace will allow the local Health Protection Teams and more widely the Council to act and advise accordingly. Data from the reporting of tests is one of the main ways in which outbreak management action plans are determined and we all therefore have a personal responsibility to ensure that we act in line with the guidelines in this respect.

Testing – Students

All 16-18 students will be required to carry out a lateral flow test before starting the course. All students will be offered an opportunity to book a slot to take a test on site on Friday 3rd September, prior to any of the cohorts return for day 1 of induction. The communication has been despatched to students with a link to the booking system. In the event that a student does not book an on-site test, on day 1 of induction, they are required to bring a declaration form with them to confirm that they have taken a lateral flow test at home on the morning of day 1 and that that has returned a negative result, alongside a view of the NHS Test and Trace application screen so that we have verification of the registration. In the event that a student is unable to provide a declaration and proof of test, there will be a bank of desks set up for lateral flow testing to the side of induction and they will be required to take a test and await the result. In the event that the student does not wish to take a test, they cannot remain on site.

Vaccinations

We have been advised of a number of walk in and pop up clinics where those above the age of 16 can now attend and receive the Covid vaccination.

Face Coverings

It is very apparent in society that there are different perspectives on wearing a face covering. You will be aware that the wearing of a face covering in any setting is no longer enforceable legally. However, the College position will remain that whilst it is an individual choice to continue to wear a face covering, we fully encourage the use of face coverings in all settings whilst at College. We will continue to encourage but not enforce and keep a watching brief on the guidance in this respect.

Social Distancing

In line with the government guidance, we have moved to Step 4 of the roadmap out of Covid19 and as such the restrictions on staying 2 metres apart are no longer a legal requirement. However, it is also explicit within the guidelines, and a position we adopt as a College that you should minimise risk by limiting your level of social contact within a 2 metre parameter.

Signage

You will notice that the signage around the College that reminds us all of a 2 metre distance will remain for the foreseeable future and we will continue to ensure that the messages on the digital screens are current and change regularly to drive home the key messages of safety.

Self-Isolation

To avoid confusion in respect of the current position of self isolation:

– Anyone with a positive test result should stay at home and self-isolate immediately

– Anyone with Covid 19 symptoms should arrange a PCR test immediately and self-isolate until the test result is known. This still applies even if you have received one or more doses of the vaccine

– Self-isolation does NOT apply to those that are a close contact of someone with Covid 19 as long as at least one of the criteria listed below is met. Please note that you must however strictly adhere to the wearing of a face covering, social distancing and handwashing whilst at college:

– you are fully vaccinated

– you are below the age of 18 years 6 months

– you have taken part in or are currently part of an approved COVID-19 vaccine trial

– you are not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons

Reporting

We continue to be required to report our Covid data to the Department for Education. It is imperative that your test results are recorded as mentioned earlier, and that positive cases are notified immediately to coronavirusfaq@telfordcollege.ac.uk so that we can ensure we are giving an accurate picture that feeds in to the overall picture of the area.