Latest Announcements

Telephone Interviews for 2021 Entry will now be scheduled from January, therefore applicants who have not already received an interview letter, will receive one from January onwards.

Unfortunately, due to COVID-19, it will not be possible for us to run our traditional Open Evenings in October, but we are exploring other ways to provide students with guidance and support and will publish information on our website as these alternative arrangements fall into place.

Our general ‘Introduction to the College’ can be found here:

INTRODUCTION TO COLLEGE:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kp_-JCnAObY

Further details, for those considering making an application to us, can be found here:

HOW TO APPLY FOR A PLACE:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gWfrFyljWxg

HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR COURSE OF STUDY:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mv9SwndRIQo


The link is here

Support for students during lockdown 

We know that lockdown is hard for everybody, but particularly challenging for young people, especially those who are at a crucial stage in their educational careers. This is a period of huge uncertainty and, perhaps, considerable worry and anxiety for you. This document is intended to follow on from the communication sent to you earlier this week, to give you more detail about the extra pastoral support available to you and respond to concerns you may have. Remember that your Personal Tutor should generally still be the first point of contact for you and your parents – make sure you keep in touch with them! 

How will I get my qualifications this summer – or even next summer? And if there are no exams, what am I working towards? How will I stay motivated?

We now know from the Government that this summer’s GCSE, AS and A level exams have been cancelled. If you were due to take these exams in summer 2021, you will still be awarded grades. The College will be given further information soon, we hope, about how the assessment will work, but we can promise you that we will apply all guidance with the utmost care and fairness.

As your grade won’t now depend on papers that are months away, there is even more reason to be working hard now – you won’t be able to rely on last minute revision (not that it’s an effective strategy anyway!) so all the work you are doing is important and your teachers will be working hard to help you engage and make progress.

Look out for the Tutorial materials which will be sent to you over the next few weeks, as they will include giving you advice and tips on working from home effectively.

I don’t have the computing facilities that I need at home and our financial situation makes things difficult

We have laptops available to loan to students. If you need one, please contact your Senior Tutor. These laptops are provided by the College. There may be a further supply in the future, as part of a new Government scheme.

If you are struggling to afford sufficient data, there may again be help available shortly, via a scheme involving phone network and internet providers. In the meantime, if you can’t access the internet at home, tell your Senior Tutor – you should be eligible to work in College. Similarly, if there is no quiet space for you to work or your home situation makes it difficult to focus, you may be eligible to work in College and, as previously communicated, can make an arrangement via your Senior Tutor or Jo Cadman (Assistant Principal) or for some students, via Sarah Prince (Director of Learning Support). (Please don’t come into College without an arrangement – once you have permission, you will receive further instructions about accessing College safely).

If you receive the bursary, you will get your bursary payment as planned in February. If you receive food tokens, you should receive a cheque within the next seven days, it will be for £90 to cover extra food costs (instead of the food tokens you would otherwise have received).

Your financial situation might have changed recently. If you don’t receive the bursary but think you might be eligible, please contact the Finance department: Finance@colchsfc.ac.uk

We also have a “discretionary” fund, so that Senior Tutors can award or loan money to students in need. Email your Senior Tutor to discuss your needs.

If your family needs help with heating or fuel costs at home, there is a new voucher scheme that is available: https://www.warmhomesessex.org.uk/

The College also holds foodbank vouchers. Contact your Senior Tutor to find out about this.

I’m worried about my mental health

Many students will be feeling anxious at the moment. For most, it is an understandable reaction to a distressing time. If you feel this way, do look back at previous Tutorial materials on resilience – and watch out for upcoming Tutorials about looking after your wellbeing at this time.

However, if you think it’s a bit more serious than that and you’re worried, please talk to somebody. That could be someone at home, your GP or someone at College.

During College hours, there will always be a Safeguarding Lead on duty, and you can contact them via the College main reception on 01206 500700. If it’s not so urgent or serious, you could start by emailing your Personal Tutor, who should be able to give you a call, if you wish.

Alternatively, contact the Welfare Hub, welfare@colchsfc.ac.uk. They offer appointments, both in person and virtually, and can also help you to access other help, for example from our College counsellors or from outside agencies such as EWMHS or IAPT, which are NHS mental health services.

Remember that College staff won’t be picking up emails outside normal College hours.

These sources of support for emotional wellbeing are all recommended by our College counsellor:

Reducing anxiety and self-help during Coronavirus 

https://www.nelft.nhs.uk/download.cfm?doc=docm93jijm4n4759.pdf&ver=7853 

Self-isolation Support pack 

https://www.nelft.nhs.uk/download.cfm?doc=docm93jijm4n4760.pdf&ver=7854 

Useful Apps and websites: - https://www.kooth.com/  https://togetherall.com/en-gb/    

I don’t feel safe

Being confined at home can make some issues worse, and reduce the opportunities you would normally have to get help. During College hours, there will always be a Safeguarding Lead on duty, and you can contact them via the College main reception on 01206 500700. To discuss a non-urgent issue, you could start by emailing your Personal Tutor or Senior Tutor. Again, it’s important to remember that they probably won’t pick up a message outside normal College hours.

In an emergency, or outside College hours, use the contacts listed on the College public website, under Safeguarding: https://www.colchsfc.ac.uk/safeguarding/

If things are difficult at home, you may be eligible to work in College. Contact your Senior Tutor to arrange this.

You will probably have some ups and downs during the next few weeks and there will be challenges for all of us. If you need help, whether it’s with your College work or some other issue, please ask!


Jo Cadman - Assistant Principal, Designated Safeguarding Lead

Further updates following the Government announcements on the evening of Monday 4th January 2021 - with further changes in College arrangements from Wednesday 6th January 2021 until at least Monday 19th February 2021 now necessary.

In a televised address yesterday evening, and in response to very serious public health concerns, the Prime Minister announced a significant new additional framework of restrictive measures which will be applicable across England from Wednesday 6th January.  This includes a range of new measures and requirements affecting education in England.  Relevant sections of a supporting DfE document, published very late on Monday 4th January and outlining the Government required framework, is below for your information:

 

 

National lockdown to come into force on Wednesday 6 January

 

The Prime Minister has today announced that a new national lockdown will come into force at 00:01 on Wednesday 6 January. 

 

During the period of national lockdown, schools, alternative provision, special schools, and colleges will remain open to vulnerable children and young people and the children of critical workers only. Public vocational exams and assessments scheduled to take place in January will go ahead as planned. All other children and students will learn remotely until February half term. 

Higher Education provision will remain online until mid-February for all except future critical worker courses.

 

All early years providers (including registered childminders but not including reception years in primary schools) can remain open during this period of national lockdown. 

In these circumstances, we do not think it is possible for exams to go ahead fairly this summer. The Secretary of State for Education will be asking Ofqual to consult rapidly on an approach for alternative arrangements that will allow students to progress fairly.

 

We understand that schools and colleges may wish to open tomorrow (Tuesday 5 January) to allow for the distribution of remote education resources, and that is permitted within these rules, though not required. 

 

We know that receiving face-to-face education is best for children’s mental health and for their educational achievement. We will be reviewing the restrictions on schools, colleges and universities and will ensure that children and young people return to face-to-face education as soon as the pressures are easing on the NHS.

 

This decision does not suggest that schools and colleges are no longer safe places for young people. Instead, limiting attendance is about reducing the number of contacts that all of us have with people in other households. 

 

We have resisted closing schools until now, but in the face of the rapidly rising numbers of cases across the country and intense pressure on the NHS, we now need to use every lever at our disposal to reduce all contacts outside households wherever possible.

 

For vulnerable children and the children of critical workers, who can still attend school or college, as they did in March to May, and their teachers, the system of protective measures means that any risks are well managed and controlled. 

 

We are responding to the intense pressure on the NHS, but that pressure is not driven by children. We are not seeing significant pressure from coronavirus (COVID-19) in paediatrics across the UK. The new variant appears to affect all ages but we have not seen any changes in the severity among any age groups, including children and young people.

 

The overwhelming majority of children and young people have no symptoms or very mild illness only. As cases in the community rise there will be a small increase in the number of children we see with coronavirus (COVID-19) who only rarely require admission to hospital.

 

Vulnerable children and children of critical workers who can attend school and college

During the period of national lockdown, schools and colleges should only allow vulnerable children and the children of critical workers to attend. Children with at least one parent or carer who is listed as a critical worker are eligible for a school place. It is not necessary for both parents to be critical workers. 

 

Schools and colleges should speak to parents and carers to identify who requires a school place. If it proves necessary, you can ask for simple evidence that the parent in question is a critical worker, such as their work ID badge or pay slip.

 

The critical worker list has been updated to include new workforces whose work is critical following the end of the EU transition period. It is important these people are also identified as critical workers and their children can attend the education setting. This change will see a small increase in the overall number of critical workers. 

 

The Prime Minister communicated that the new restrictive Government framework of measures will apply in education until at least the start of the second half of the Spring Term - and said these will not be lifted until a number of key public health criteria he outlined have been met.

It is worth highlighting some key aspects affecting the work of College staff and students in the period ahead arising from the new Government requirements:

 

  • No onsite teaching classes can now take place on school and college sites until further notice.   All teaching and learning will now move to a remote and directed independent study (blended learning) framework.

 

  • Schools and colleges are to stay open only for students undertaking Winter period public exam sittings (see below) and for vulnerable children and young people and for the children of critical workers.  The provision for children of critical workers is intended to provide childcare so that parents can go to work.  College students clearly do not need childcare!  However, ‘children of critical workers’ may make a request to study onsite if there are particular circumstances or difficulties.  Those who wish to request use of onsite College facilities for their remote lessons and study onsite must initially contact one of the following in order to make a firm arrangement:
  • their Senior Tutor 
  • Sarah Prince, Director of Learning Support
  • Jo Cadman, Assistant Principal (Pastoral)

No student should arrive at College to study independently without authorisation.

  • The Government have determined* that all the public external exams and assessments scheduled for January/Winter 2021 are still to take place.  Therefore, our students who have external public exam sittings scheduled within the 6th January to early March (Winter) period should come in to sit their exams.  However, our internal Year 2 A level and IB mock exam programme scheduled for 11th – 15th January is suspended.

 *Please note that there has been huge disquiet, expressed from a large number of colleges and schools across England, about the Government decision to progress with the Winter period external public exams.  The Government was this morning asked to reconsider this decision but have indicated that they are unwilling to change their decision.

 

  • With regard to award of qualifications in Summer 2021 (i.e. the external public exams and assessments), the Government has communicated:

 “we do not think it is possible for all exams in the summer to go ahead as planned. We will accordingly be working with Ofqual to consult rapidly to put in place alternative arrangements that will allow students to progress fairly”.

 There is currently therefore a significant lack of clarity regarding which specific courses may not now be involved in exam assessment in the Summer, how grades would then be awarded relating to Summer 2021 qualifications - and we await far more detailed information and guidance from the Government regarding their plans and decisions.  We will of course, quickly inform staff, students and parents/carers as and when we have more information – but for now we have no more detail to provide than is given here.

 A summary of College arrangements within the context of the framework laid down by the Government:

  • No face-to-face classes in College from Wednesday 6th January until further notice.
  • Students entered for January/Winter examinations should attend unless contacted – exams start tomorrow Wednesday 6th January and run until March.
  • Year 2 A level and IB mocks will not now run in the week beginning 11th January – we still hope to run these when the College re-opens but will keep this under review, depending on announcements regarding the nature of the Government decisions regarding award of Summer 2021 qualifications, i.e. exams or alternative arrangements.  
  • IB Diploma arrangements are determined separately by IBO, internationally, and updates re IBO arrangements will be communicated directly to the relevant students on this programme.  As yet IBO have given no indication that their May 2021 exams and assessments will not take place.  It is important therefore that Year 2 students continue to revise for potential mocks and also that Year 1 A level students continue to revise the work that has been covered so far.
  • Teaching staff will continue to teach their syllabus for their course as planned, although remotely for now, and generally using the same timetable as now, i.e. a minimum of one 2 hour 40 minute long lesson each week.  Teachers will confirm specific arrangements with their classes for each A level/Applied General course over the next day or two.  Students are expected to attend remote lessons and to complete the work set by their teachers, i.e. to stick with your learning and keep going – there is so much detail still up in the air that we await announcements on and some of these may well take weeks, so it is important that all students and teaching staff keep going as planned.  Teaching staff will continue to use a range of learning approaches and technologies as appropriate to the subject and the nature of the assessments, but will generally and mainly use Teams and Moodle resources and facilities.
  • Pastoral and welfare support continues.  Students may still contact their Personal Tutor or Senior Tutor to discuss any difficulties, and Personal and Senior Tutors will continue to monitor engagement and progress.  In addition, welfare staff and counsellors are still available.  Please continue to seek help if you need it.  There will be more advice and support for students via tutorial materials which will be emailed to students over the next few weeks.

A general perspective:

The situation is rapidly changing and developing and it’s often very difficult for us to give precise details regarding future activities or assessments related to specific courses.  For example, we do not know exactly how and when students will return to their classrooms – nor do we know, with any certainty, when any mock exams might potentially be.  We will be guided by the Government and others as we put these things in place.  We expect to hear more over the coming weeks, but often, even when ‘headline’ announcements are made quickly, it takes weeks or even months for the details regarding particular qualifications to be announced.  We will give students more specific information as soon as we can.

 In times of such uncertainty, we would, however, like to reassure students that everyone here at College wants them to succeed.  It is important to us, and to the Government, and universities and employers, and the country as a whole, that this generation thrives and moves on to achieve goals and ambitions.  There will be problems, but we will approach this in the spirit of working closely with students and their family, to try to solve any problems as and when they arise and help them move forward.

 Everything that we do over the coming months is important; students should stay on top of any preparation for potential mock exams and do their best to use every opportunity to show what they can do.

 What else can I do?

To reiterate, as and when we receive any more information and guidance from the Government we will inform you – so please regularly check emails (or alternatively, for students – Moodle, for staff – Sharepoint, and for parents/carers – the College website).

As well as receiving specific communications from your subject teachers and Personal Tutors there will be other communications that will be sent to some specific cohorts of students, e.g. HLN or vulnerable students.  Again, it is important that students check emails.

In terms of what else you can do, we would emphasise the following:

STAY IN TOUCH – Please communicate with your teachers and tutors and others involved in supporting you at College where appropriate to raise worries or concerns.

STAY ON TOP OF YOUR COURSES – do everything that you can to engage in provision, complete tasks sent to you and maintain your progress.

STAY POSITIVE – The public health situation will move forward, particularly as a large number of vaccinations are successfully achieved, and it is our firm intention to ensure that you will be able to pursue your plans and aspirations for the future.  We will all need to be flexible and work differently in the weeks and months ahead, but if we work together we will achieve this. We also expect there to be both flexibility and accommodation at national level to help you.

Please also follow all Government guidance to keep yourself, your household and the wider community safe.

Ian MacNaughton - Principal 

This document is aimed primarily at parents, although it is also being made available to students for information. Students will receive further briefings during the enrolment period, with more detailed, practical guidance.

Context

You will no doubt have heard a lot of discussion in the media about the government arrangements re “return to school” for children in September, which involves all school pupils returning full-time, with protective factors such as year group bubbles in place. The government framework for 16-18 year olds, young adults, in colleges is somewhat different: some of the measures being put in place in schools are not practical (e.g. our year group bubble would consist of 1500 students and would therefore do very little to mitigate risk).  In colleges, the government believes that the students have the young adult maturity to take more responsibility for their safety and they are also able to cope better with “blended learning”, combining classroom study with work undertaken at home.

Abnormal Timetable Arrangements

Your son/daughter will receive their personal teaching timetable on 8th September (second years) or 9th September (first years). They will see their “normal” timetable, to which we will return when it is safe to do so, and also their initial individual timetable for the Phase 1 period, with one long lesson per subject per week in College. Classes will be split in half during this Phase 1 period and your son/daughter will attend one of two long lessons per week. They will access the lesson they don’t attend via streaming/recording or other off-site supported study. Most of these resources will be accessible via a smartphone but students will benefit from being able to use a computer or laptop at home. If your son/daughter has no access to IT facilities, they should speak to their Senior Tutor. There will also be directed homework, e.g. essays to write, problem sheets etc. – which will vary according to the subject.

The duration of the abnormal timetable arrangements will be kept under review and will largely depend on factors outside the College’s control, such as Government guidance and the local and national rates of infection.

Getting to College

We know that the majority of our students rely on public transport. You will have seen from recent communications that many of the bus companies are responding positively to our request to increase the level of service provision. We anticipate that there will also be plenty of capacity on trains. Nevertheless, if your son/daughter is able to walk or cycle to College, that would be ideal. If you are dropping off or collecting your son/daughter by car, please be aware that you must not come on-site.  Stopping places on North Hill are extremely limited and we expect the roads to be busy from the 1st September. We would advise you to drop off or meet your son/daughter at Middleborough or another place slightly outside the town centre.

Arriving at College

Outside College buildings, students are not required to wear face coverings, as long as they are maintaining social distancing. On entering a building, students will be required to put on a face covering. Face coverings should be worn whenever students are in a College building but not in a lesson. A small number of students will have a specific difficulty which makes wearing a face covering impossible. In these cases, Senior Tutors will issue a pass, which students should be ready to show if challenged by a member of staff.

All students should clean their hands on arrival and frequently during the time they are at College, either by washing thoroughly or using hand sanitiser. We will be providing sanitiser at each entrance and at other points around College but it would be helpful if your son/daughter could bring their own small bottle, to avoid queues forming.

Lessons

In most subjects, your son/daughter’s initial lessons in Phase 1 will be in groups of students of between 8-12 in size. Although there is no requirement in government guidance for students to observe a particular social distance in classrooms, the small numbers in these half groups will allow for a good level of social distancing between students, usually exceeding “1 metre plus”. Students are not required to wear face coverings in lessons, but they are welcome to do so, if they wish to. Teachers may ask students to wipe down desks at the beginning or end of lessons, and cleaning materials will be available in each classroom. Teachers have been advised to maintain social distance, so some normal lesson activities will be constrained by this.

Spending time in College

Normally, we would be encouraging students to spend any “free” periods between lessons in College studying. However, in order to minimise numbers on site, we will be asking students to arrive in time for a lesson (or meeting with their tutor) and to leave immediately when their timetabled commitments have finished for the day. The only exceptions will be for students classed as “vulnerable” and those whose travel arrangements do not allow them to leave immediately. There will be sufficient socially distanced study spaces for these students to work in College.

Lunchtimes, food and drink

Students are welcome to remain on site at lunch time if they have a lesson in the morning and the afternoon. There will be a limited food service from our refectories but students are encouraged to bring in their own lunch and they should also bring a bottle of water. Students can eat lunch in the refectories and in most public areas of the College (except where there are computers).

Cleaning

We have instituted an enhanced cleaning regime. In addition to a thorough clean in the morning or evening, each classroom will be cleaned at lunchtime, between the morning and afternoon lesson.

Illness, symptoms of COVID 19

If your son/daughter has any of the major symptoms of COVID 19 (high temperature, new persistent cough, loss of taste/smell) they should not come to College. Please book a test via the NHS website. Then notify the College of the situation. When you receive the result, please notify the College again. We will of course be liaising with Public Health England and the Track and Trace service in the event of any case of coronavirus.

If your son/daughter develops any of these symptoms while at College, they should tell a member of staff immediately and we will contact you so that you can arrange their transport home.

We would not expect students to stay at home with minor cold symptoms but if your son/daughter has flu-like symptoms or any illness with a temperature, they should not come to College, and you should seek medical advice.

Start of 2020/21 year timetable and curriculum provision arrangements, Year 2 re-enrolment

  • 1st-9th September: 
  • Subject teachers will direct Year 2 students to work to be completed from 1st September through to 9th September. This is likely to include guidance with regards to the preparations for your Internal Assessments in each of your subjects in the 21st-25th September period.
  • Tuesday 8th September - Year 2 re-enrolment and Tutorial:
  • Year 2 students will return to College on the 8th September for a half day, at either 09:30am or 13:00pm, and will meet in their designated Personal Tutor base/room for a 2.5 hour re-enrolment and Tutorial session. Your specific individual arrangement will have been communicated to you this week in the (Zoom) Tutorial. If you are unclear with regards to your specific arrangement please email your Personal Tutor to clarify. In this session you will finalise and confirm your Year 2 courses and complete a Year 2 enrolment form and questionnaire, compile a timetable ready for teaching on 10th September. There will also be progression and other important Tutorial activities and materials.
  • Period from Thursday 10th September, start of teaching classes:
  • A 3 phase curriculum provision plan will be in place for the start of the 2020/21 academic year. We are very much hoping that we can return to our normal, or near normal, arrangements in October or immediately after Half Term:

Phase 1 (10th September to most likely 2nd October, possibly a week earlier or possibly later – the ‘end date’ to be determined following reviews and developing circumstances):

  • We will use a similar temporary timetable blocking system to the arrangements used 6th-10th July (2 extended timetable blocks per day, AM and PM) – with staggered (2) start/finish and comfort break times (detail emailed/on Moodle).
  • Academic teaching groups will be initially generally ‘split’ into 2 half week cohorts. A level students and Applied General course students will have one 2.5 hour onsite small group teaching lesson per week in each subject and in general courses with less than the normal level of 8 periods of contact will have approximately 60% of the normal teaching time in a session. Therefore, the majority of Year 2 students will be attending onsite on 2 or 3 of the days each week in the Phase 1 period. Alongside these relatively small and intensive teaching classes, subject staff will set their students work and direct you to supported self-study.
  • We will generally operate as in the 6th-10th July period ‘split’ academic teaching groups – and groups will generally be 7-11 in size. Where groups are relatively small and do not need to be split, staff will provide their group with their entire timetable time within the 2 blocks of Phase 1 timetabled time available. You will be allocated to the same groups as in the 6th-10th July period. The allocations will be confirmed to you in the 1st-8th September period.
  • The postponed May Internal Assessments are to be held in the week of 21st-25th September. The exams and assessments will all be completed within one week. There will be a maximum of one 2.5 hours assessment per subject – held in the same class grouping and timetable slot and rooming that Year 2 students will otherwise be in for teaching classes in Phase 1.
  • A later start to the day (to minimise use of public transport in peak times) and staggered (2) start/end times for lessons and break times – first Year 2 classes starting at 09:30am and the last classes ending at 16:00pm (a slight variation to the arrangements used 6th-10th July – detail emailed/on Moodle). Please note that the timings of the Year 1 classes will be different.
  • Students will be registered in each of their timetabled subject lessons but to ensure that your pastoral support continues effectively, students will also have one weekly onsite central Registration/Tutorial with their Personal Tutor - which will be on one of the days when you are in for subject lessons. Personal Tutors will tell you which Registration/Tutorial you should attend when your individual subject class timetable is available. The sizes of the daily subsets of Personal Tutor groups are therefore likely to be between 5-12 students in size.
  • In addition, students will receive via email and Moodle regular centrally prepared Tutorial materials (largely through audio narrated PowerPoints). These materials will help support your reintroduction to working in College and your next steps towards progression beyond College. Your re-enrolment session on 8th September, in morning or afternoon sessions (see the earlier section), will also include Tutorial materials on these topics. Personal Tutors will also offer further one to one guidance as they normally would. This might be on site or via Zoom/Teams.
  • Most Additional Studies and a few of our qualification-based courses that use software, will commence on a remote basis (e.g. College Magazine, Financial Certificate), as will many of our normal extra-curricular activities and experiences (e.g. Holocaust Memorial Programme). The start of a few activities will need to be either delayed or postponed (e.g. Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award).
  • Students will generally only be expected to be on the College site for their timetabled teaching lessons and their Registration/Tutorial arrangements (and the periods in between their timetabled sessions). There will be very limited social and catering facilities available for most students and independent study facilities will also be relatively limited. However, vulnerable students or other students who gain Personal Tutor/Senior Tutor approval (e.g. those with particular needs or acute transport complications) will of course be more fully accommodated with a wider range of facilities. There will be a few adjustments including to the access arrangements within the main building.
  • It is very important that we maintain a safe environment for everyone and a range of PPE, social distancing, other mitigation measures and a series of requirements and instructions will be in place – building upon our arrangements and experiences within the 6th-10th July period. There will, for example, be changes made to the main building access arrangements used in July. All students will need to have face coverings for each visit to the College – which will also be needed for use of public transport and indeed now for any visits to retail premises.

Phase 2 (most likely commencing from 5th October, or possibly a week earlier or later, to be kept under review):

Phase 2 may be relatively short - perhaps just a week or two.

  • Continue to use the temporary abnormal timetable structure used in both Phase 1 and 6th-10th July.
  • Move to ‘whole academic groups’ – and you will therefore receive your full ‘normal’ level of onsite face to face academic teaching classes (e.g. 4 hours 40 minutes per week for an A level course).
  • Personal Tutor Registration/Tutorial sessions will continue as Phase 1, with the possibility of introducing a second session per week for each student.
  • Some further adjustments in mitigation measures and operational arrangements.
  • Other arrangements broadly as in Phase 1.

Phase 3 (starting date to be kept under review – but hopefully at some point in October or after Half Term):

  • Move to our ‘normal’ timetable arrangement – with students required to be onsite for 5 days a week. There will also be normal daily Registration and Thursday Tutorial arrangements.
  • We also hope to be able to move most Additional Studies courses from remote arrangements to normal delivery methods.
  • The 3 phase framework largely builds, progressively, upon the models and arrangements we have used between 6th–10th July.

Students will be given their Phase 3 timetable on 8th September so that they are aware of the ‘normal’ framework that will apply in due course.

  • These arrangements are in the context of a changing but still potentially volatile and dynamic abnormal scenario regarding the local, UK and global levels of coronavirus, and the related Government requirements, guidelines and frameworks (including those for public transport. Our aim is to maintain the safety, health and wellbeing of all in our community whilst doing our best to provide our students with the best possible levels of educational experience we can in the circumstances.
  • The Phase 1 and 2 aspects of the plan will not be ‘perfect’ – and indeed these arrangements, or any others, are a compromise relating to a range of factors applicable, many of which effectively ‘compete’ against each other. The period ahead will continue to require us all to be flexible and to be willing to problem solve and consider making accommodations and adjustments. A number of ‘micro’ issues and problems relating to implementation of Phases 1 and 2 will exist or will emerge, and we will all need to try to be pragmatic in our attempts to find workable and reasonable solutions. We also need to keep our arrangements under review in the context of the national and local developments, Government requirements and guidelines.
  • Where applicable, in late August please check arrangements with your public transport provider with regards to the levels of service and capacity that will be in place for early September. Most bus and train operators have recently returned to providing near normal service levels – and most bus companies have recently increased their capacity levels. We expect that their arrangements will be regularly reviewed and that further adjustments could well be made for the period from early September onwards. Arising from the abnormal circumstances at present most of the bus and train operators have not published their fares and season ticket rates for the period from September – but we expect them to do this over the next few weeks. Please contact the relevant operators in the mid to late August period to check – and as we have the information made available to us we will update the Travel/Transport sections of the website with this information.

Sources of support in the period immediately ahead:

I understand that some of you will have faced very difficult circumstances in the past few months. If you are in need of immediate help during the next few weeks, while we are on summer vacation, please go to the Safeguarding section of the College website:

https://www.colchsfc.ac.uk/safeguarding/

Senior staff will again be available in College from 11th August onwards and can be contacted either via email or by phoning the main College switchboard (01206 500700).

I am also sending this communication to your parents/carers to also keep them in the picture.

I hope you now have a really good Summer break. This has clearly been a very abnormal and challenging period for us all and we have had to adapt and be pragmatic. There is every reason to feel positive regarding the period ahead and staff at the College will try to help you as much as possible.

Best wishes

Ian MacNaughton

15th July 2020

The College is following Government advice carefully and responding promptly to all updates. We are keeping students up to date with current advice, which is also available on Moodle. Here is the Government’s information and advice page, which is updated daily: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public

There are general principles anyone can follow to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:

  • washing your hands often - with soap and water, or use alcohol sanitiser if handwashing facilities are not available. This is particularly important after taking public transport
  • covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throwing the tissue in a bin. See Catch it, Bin it, Kill it
  • people who feel unwell should stay at home and should not attend work or any education or childcare setting
  • pupils, students, staff and visitors should wash their hands:
    • before leaving home
    • on arrival at school
    • after using the toilet
    • after breaks and sporting activities
    • before food preparation
    • before eating any food, including snacks
    • before leaving school
  • use an alcohol-based hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available
  • avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
  • avoid close contact with people who are unwell
  • clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
  • if you are worried about your symptoms or those of a child or colleague, please call NHS 111. Do not go directly to your GP or other healthcare environment
We weren't able to invite everyone in to our annual Awards & Reunion Event this term, so we've prepared this brief online presentation to celebrate the success of the students that left us in Summer 2020. Well done to you all!

Link to YouTube awards presentation

Applications

Apply Now - please click on the 'Apply Now' link below to submit an Online Application for 2021 Entry. Applications will close on the 31 January 2021.

Exam Results

The Sixth Form College is celebrating another year of outstanding exam success for students.

Courses

We offer over 50 A Level courses - probably the largest range of options available in any college in the country. Options include familiar subjects but also many that are not usually available at GCSE. A number of Additional Studies courses are also available.

Find Out More

Listen to what our staff and students have to say and find out more about the sporting, cultural and charitable activities and achievements of the students at the College.

Safeguarding

Safeguarding our students is of paramount importance to us. Here you will find essential information for students, parents and others, including who to contact and what to do if you have a concern. For further information about our pastoral care and the range of support available to our students, see Your Care.

Your Care

We aim to be a college of sanctuary, a place where everyone feels welcome, safe and supported throughout their studies. We all have difficulties and face challenges in our lives at times and any one of us may find we need to seek help or support. There are a number of ways students can find help. The first port of call should be their personal tutor, but we have a range of places where students can find the support they may need.

Your Progression

The Careers Department has a specialist team of staff and many resources to help you to make decisions about your future. Resources are used in the weekly tutorial programme and special events are planned throughout the year to ensure you make informed choices about your future. You may also book careers appointments regarding advice and guidance, on a one-to-one basis, at any time.

Additional Studies

The College is a vibrant young adult community and there is a great deal going on. A very wide-ranging programme of Additional Studies and extra-curricular activities is available, providing a large number of sporting, creative and cultural opportunities to all students.

College Facilities

At the Sixth Form College, we teach all of our courses in specialist sixth form accommodation on one purpose-built site, located in a very accessible central area of Colchester. There are seven separate buildings, all specifically focused upon the academic teaching, learning and wider experiences appropriate for 16-19 year olds.

Prospectus

Our Prospectus is available for immediate download from our online library of key documents for viewing or printing. Printed copies of our Prospectus are also available upon request.

Documents

Downloadable documents for parents and students, including the Students Handbook Charter and Diary, Additional Studies Handbook, Prospectus, the 2018 Ofsted Inspection Report, Student Leavers' Notes, Parents' Handbook, occasional Students' Notes, and more.

For Parents

Information and guidance useful to parents/guardians of students currently enrolled at the Sixth Form College, as well as those of students considering making an application, including information regarding transport, student finance and important dates. Updated regularly.