Coronavirus (COVID-19) information for students and staff

Update – Friday 18th June 2021

The Dudley borough has seen a rise in the Delta variant, and because of this, we ask that unless exempt, everyone wears face coverings in their classrooms and communal areas, for the rest of the summer term.  This is necessary for all students, staff, and visitors. 

Please remember that the face coverings must be worn over the mouth and nose.

We continue to ask that all students and staff conduct lateral flow tests (LFT) twice weekly.  Please continue to pick up your LFT from the Student HUB.  Those who test positive should self-isolate and book a confirmatory PCR test. 

This work will help to reduce the transmission of the virus and keep students in face-to-face education. 

From Monday 21st June 2021:

  • You must wear a face-covering in the classroom.
  • You must wear a face-covering when travelling to college by public transport or on a college coach.
  • You must wear a face-covering in any of the college food outlets (Elliott’s, Starbucks, Bistro, Munch), unless you are seated and eating/drinking.
  • You are encouraged to still wear a face-covering when moving around busy areas where social distancing cannot be maintained.

We remind all students and staff, you must always: 

  1. Minimise contact with others who are required to self-isolate and ensure that anyone with covid symptoms does not attend college.
  2. Use face coverings.
  3. Clean your hands thoroughly and more often than usual.
  4. Have good respiratory hygiene by promoting catch it, bin it, kill it as advertised across campus. 
  5. Maintain enhanced cleaning, including cleaning frequently touched surfaces often.
  6. Consider how to minimise contact and maintain social distancing wherever possible.
  7. Keep occupied spaces well ventilated. 
  8. Wear appropriate personal protective equipment, where necessary.
  9. Continue to engage in testing, using the lateral flow tests provided.


Latest FAQs

Do I need to report a confirmed positive Covid-19 case to the college?

We would ask Students and staff to please report positive cases to the college as normal using the online absence system at the bottom of the page so monitoring and reporting can take place

Will the College be offering testing to those who attend Campus?

Up to one third of people who have coronavirus are asymptomatic. By testing we will help to reduce the spread in the college setting through asymptomatic transmission. The College therefore strongly encourages those returning to college to be tested.

The lateral flow tests are quick and easy to undertake, using a swab of the nose and throat. Results take around half an hour from testing. You should inform the college of a positive test result. You will also receive a text/email confirmation of a positive or negative result from the online NHS system when you register your result. Tests are free of charge.

This testing programme at college is for people with no symptoms. If you develop symptoms at any time (including a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; or a loss or change to their sense of smell or taste) you must immediately self-isolate, and book a test by calling 119 or visiting Book a Test.

What about data collected through the coronavirus asymptomatic testing program?

Information regarding the data collected is included in a document at the top right of this page.

What do I do if I show symptoms or I live with someone who shows symptoms of coronavirus?

Students showing any symptoms of coronavirus (a high temperature, a new continuous cough or loss or change in their sense of smell or taste) should not attend College or attempt to travel to College. This is also the case if they are living with someone who is displaying these symptoms.

If a student displays any symptoms during the College day, they will need to leave the College site.

Students will be taken to a designated room to wait for parents/carers or a taxi to collect them.

An enhanced cleaning regime is in place and this will be deployed after the student has left the site.

Students will not be able to return until they are free from symptoms and the proper period of self-isolation has passed, or they are free from symptoms and have had a negative test result.

Tests can be booked on the NHS Test and Trace Website or by calling NHS 119. The College must be informed of a positive or negative result.

What are the rules regarding hygiene/handwashing?

Soap in toilets will be checked and replenished throughout the day. Any issues can be reported through QR codes in the toilets.

Hand sanitiser stations are in place at the speed gates and staff will be on duty to ensure that students use them as they enter.

There is hand sanitiser at the entrance to every block.

Toilets have handwashing instructions clearly displayed.

Ensuring Good Respiratory Hygiene by Promoting “Catch it, kill it, bin it”

Posters will promote the message around the College.

Students should bring in their own tissues to College, but tissues and bins are available around the College.

Cleaning “Frequently Touched Surfaces” Using Standard Products Such as Detergents and Bleach

Cleaning staff are scheduled throughout the day to clean frequently touched surfaces and toilets.

How’s the College minimising contact and mixing on Campus?

Students will be taught in distinct groups and the groups will be kept separate as much as possible.

Wherever possible, classrooms will be arranged so that desks are in rows with students facing forward.

Students should bring their own equipment and not share it.

Students within the same group can share College equipment but it will be cleaned regularly as part of the new cleaning routine.

Students will be required to wear face coverings on College coaches.

There will be a mix of online and face-to-face learning to limit numbers of students on campus.

Students will have been given a full induction of how to access online learning and lessons and these will be clearly timetabled alongside their face-to-face learning.

Students will have been surveyed at induction to ensure they have the necessary equipment for online learning. If any students are concerned that they do not have the necessary equipment for online learning, they are asked to inform their Personal Coach as soon as possible.

How is the College managing the retail and catering outlets?Updated

The College’s B63 Bistro, Elliott’s and Starbucks will be open in line with government guidance for retail and hospitality .

Please wear a face covering when buying food and drinks in all outlets. When you are seated to eat/drink you may remove your face covering.

Capacity will be limited, and staff will manage the number of people inside.

Please queue in a way that maintains social distance and respects other people’s space.

Sanitise your hands before eating.

Dispose of your own litter.

Wipe down your table using the sanitiser/wipes provided.

At Whittingham Road the following outlets will be open:

  • Elliot’s@B63 in Block 8
    • Main servery – selling breakfast rolls, a range of sandwiches, drinks, jackets potatoes and snacks
  • Toaster
    • Selling toast for breakfast and paninis for lunch
  • Spice Shack
    • Selling seasoned wedges and samosas
  • Starbucks Block 11
  • Bistro@B63 – Block 2
    • Book a table or takeaway service available
    • Breakfast/Brunch
      • 0800-1400
    • Lunch
      • 1200-1400
    • Cakes, Hot and Cold Drinks Only
      • 1400-1530

At Shenstone House the following outlets will be open:

  • Munch @SH is open on floor 3 for breakfast and lunch

At Coombs Wood the following outlets will be open:

  • Munch is open for sandwiches, snacks and drinks
How do I pay for things on Campus?

Please pay contactless wherever possible using a College Card or a debit/credit card.

Do I need to wear a face covering at College?Updated

We have updated our guidance on the wearing of face coverings, which apply to students, staff and visitors

  • You must still wear a face covering when travelling to college by public transport or on a college coach.
  • You must still wear a face covering in any of the college food outlets (Elliott’s, Starbucks, Bistro, Munch) unless you are seated.
  • You will not be required to wear a face covering in teaching rooms, but we will fully support you if you wish to wear one.
  • You are encouraged to still wear a face covering when moving around busy areas where social distancing cannot be maintained.

Staff and students should bring their own face covering into College as we cannot provide these on an ongoing basis.

It is essential that face coverings are worn safely, and students are discouraged from touching their face and wearing a mask that is not clean. When removing a mask, students should wash their hands first then place the mask in a sealable, plastic bag for storage, reversing the process when putting it back on. Students should ensure they have a suitable bag to store it in for times when it is not in use.

How is the College support services going to work this academic year?

For 2020-21 our College Student HUB will be accessible virtually, as well as via bookable face to face appointment.  Such services include:

  • Students’ Union
  • Library and resources
  • Learning support
  • Counselling and student support
  • Careers advice
  • Admissions and financial guidance
Do you have any resources for vulnerable learners?

Halesowen College continues to support its vulnerable students. The College’s leads for Safeguarding and Special Educational Needs and Disabilities have identified some key websites and resources which they believe may be useful to our vulnerable students and their families.

If you have any questions or queries, please contact us using the Submit a question option below.

Your Health and Wellbeing

It is normal to feel stressed and anxious during such difficult times. Below is our advice for protecting your mental health and well-being while the world navigates this ever-changing situation:

  • If you are studying at home, try to stick to a routine. Get up at your normal time, get dressed and eat breakfast as you usually would. Have a plan for your day and stick to it. Where possible, create a work station that you can leave at regular intervals for breaks 
  • Eat well, drink lots of water and exercise at home – looking after your physical health will have a positive impact on your mental health
  • Focus on fact, not rumour and speculation. Only follow reports from trusted news outlets or a credible source, such as the World Health Organisation. Try to limit the amount of time you spend listening to/reading/watching news reports
  • Where possible, follow advice given by health agencies and the government to protect you and your loved ones, including looking after your personal hygiene (wash your hands), cleaning surfaces and self-isolating, particularly if you/they fall into one of the at-risk groups
  • While social distancing is advised, you can use social media positively to keep in touch with your friends and family. Seek out some of the many stories of kindness and support people are sharing on-line 
  • If you are well, find out what you can do in your community to support those who are not well or are in an at-risk group 

If you need someone to talk to, and know your personal coach’s email address, contact them directly. If not, contact a member of the safeguarding team:

Please take care of yourselves and those around you. 

Additional Information

If you have any concerns about your health you should use the NHS 111 website initially, or if you have no internet access then contact the free NHS 111 telephone helpline. Check the NHS website for the latest official advice.

To see our previous responses and guidance, please refer to our archive pages available here:

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