College and COVID 2021 Updates

Covid and College Updates

We are looking forward to welcoming new and returning students to Kidderminster College in September and we are currently planning to deliver a normal timetable wherever possible and await further guidance around any potential restrictions.

Starting this September

We want to reassure everybody that safety remains our highest priority and some safety measures will continue to be in place across campus. Students are being asked to attend campus for testing ahead of attending college and you can find more information below. The FAQs below will provide further information about how we’re helping you stay safe while you’re on campus with us.

Student Testing

All schools, colleges and universities have been asked to provide testing on campus ahead of opening in September. This is to ensure that we can identify any aysmptomatic cases and help all of our students return to college safely without risking a rise in positive cases. All students are asked to attend two lateral flow tests on our main Kidderminster campus on Market Street before attending lessons. We’ll be sending all the details about your appointments out shortly.

Vaccines For Young People

Vaccines to help protect against the effects and transmission of Covid-19 are now available to everybody aged 16 and over. Getting vaccinated if you can is the quickest way to help protect yourself and others around you. Find your nearest vaccination site here.

Frequently Asked Questions:

What will September look like?

Safety remains our highest priority and we’re working hard to make sure that campus remains a safe place to learn. This means that there will continue to be some safety measures in place across campus such as signs to ‘Keep Left’ and we continue to ask everyone on campus to wear face coverings outside of classrooms

We will continue to follow all of the available government guidance and we are awaiting further guidance as to what restrictions may be in place in September.

We do know that new and returning students will be asked to attend campus for testing ahead of attending lessons. We’ll be in touch with your time slot.

Students and colleagues MUST NOT attend campus if they test positive for Covid-19, or are required to self-isolate.

Will I need a Covid test to attend college?

All schools, colleges and universities have been asked to provide testing on campus ahead of opening in September. This is to ensure that we can identify any aysmptomatic cases and help all of our students return to college safely without risking a rise in positive cases.

All students are asked to attend two lateral flow tests on our main campus, we will be in touch with your allotted time slots shortly.

Following this, students and colleagues will also be encouraged to test twice weekly at home until the end of September, when the government will review its guidance.

Why am I being asked to take a test before coming into KC?

All schools, colleges and universities have been asked to provide testing on campus ahead of opening in September.

One in three cases of Covid-19 do not show symptoms. Testing will help us to ensure that we can identify any aysmptomatic cases and help all of our students return to college safely without risking a rise in positive cases.

Following this, students and colleagues will also be encouraged to test twice weekly at home until the end of September, when the government will review its guidance.

What happens when I get tested at KC?

Testing on campus will take place at KC

You will be asked to complete a registration form if you do not already have one so that we can report your results. A smartphone is usually the best way to complete your form but if you do not have a device we can provide an ipad.

Once you’re set up you will be asked to take a lateral flow test and will be guided by trained members of staff. This involves you swabbing the back of your throat and nose.

You will receive your results by text and email within one hour of your test.

How do I get my test results?

You will receive your results by text and email within one hour of your test.

Result notifications come from the NHS and not the College.

Will I be asked to take part in home testing?

All students and colleagues are encouraged to continue testing at home twice weekly until the end of September, when the government will review its guidance.

All home test results should be reported to both Kidderminster College and the NHS, even if your results are negative, using the links below. (We recommend bookmarking these links on your phone):

How do I report my home test results?

All home test results should be reported to both Kidderminster College and the NHS, even if your results are negative, using the links below. (We recommend bookmarking these links on your phone):

What if I test positive for Covid-19?

If you take a Lateral Flow test and your test result is positive, you will be required to report this to the NHS and to Kidderminster College.  You should also book a PCR test to confirm your result.

This will allow close contacts to be identified and supported to self-isolate. You and the rest of your household will also need to self-isolate following the latest NHS guidance.

You must not attend campus after a positive test

What if I get symptoms of Covid-19

If you, or someone in your household experiences symptoms, DO NOT ATTEND campus. The main symptoms include a fever, a new and continuous cough, or a loss of taste and smell.

If you develop symptoms:

If you develop one or more of the main symptoms of Covid-19 you should stay at home for the time recommended by the NHS and book a test here.

You should not return to campus until you receive a negative test result or your isolation period has finished.

If you are already at college when you develop symptoms, you will be asked to go to an isolated room before going home to isolate and book a test.

You should inform the college of your test results as soon as you receive them.

What if someone on campus tests positive for Covid-19?

When we receive news of a confirmed case from a student or a staff member, we follow the steps below. This explains why students and parents won’t always be contacted directly regarding confirmed cases on campus.

Step 1

The first thing we do is contact the local Health Protection Team (that’s a local arm of the government’s Public Health department who help to manage our health and safety on a regional level).

They will ask us and the affected persons lots of questions about when they were last on campus, which areas they’ve been to and who they’ve been in contact with.

Step 2

From this information, they’ll decide who will need to self-isolate or undertake testing. If you are affected by this, for example because they’re in your class or share a floor on a building with you, we will contact you directly.

In some cases, you will be asked to self-isolate and at other times you may not be asked to self-isolate but your learning will be moved online temporarily, following your usual timetable.

If you are not contacted directly, it is because it is extremely unlikely that you have been in any contact with the affected persons and therefore are not at any risk. Therefore, you should continue to follow your timetable as normal unless you are advised otherwise.

For those who are asked to self-isolate or remain at home, it is important to remember that the risk remains extremely low, thanks to the measures we have in place on campus which reduce contact with others.

Step 3

We will always undertake a deep cleaning of the affected areas when guided to do so, using specialist equipment and products designed to eradicate Covid-19. This means students may see teams of people in full PPE around campus from time to time and this is nothing to be concerned about.

While deep cleaning will usually only affect certain classrooms and facilities, we will update our website and social media (Facebook and Twitter) when this may impact on learning (for example if a building will be closed for a day).

However, it is not possible for us to contact all students individually. As you will understand, our priority is contacting students directly affected, following the advice of the local Health Protection Team and ensuring the learning of unaffected students continues uninterrupted. We will keep you updated via social media (Facebook and Twitter).

What if I, or someone I live with, are high risk?

Your health and wellbeing is our first priority and Kidderminster College is here to support you.

We understand that some students may be at additional risk or feel anxious about returning to college, particularly if you have any underlying health condition, are part of the BAME community or live with someone who is vulnerable.

Please be reassured that we have taken all possible and suitable precautions to ensure that our campus is a safe place to study.

If you have any health concerns about your return to college please speak to your Personal Tutor, who will be able to ensure we put the right support in place for you.

Do I need to wear a face covering?

If you are attending campus for enrolment, we encourage you to wear a face covering to help protect our colleagues and community.

In line with the latest government guidance, face coverings are no longer required to be worn in classrooms.

Face coverings will be required for commercial outlets, where students are training and working directly with customers and other members of the public (like our Elements Salon)

We will also continue to encourage all students, colleagues and visitors to wear face coverings across all indoor areas of campus outside of the classroom to help protect our community.

Do I need to be vaccinated to attend college?

Vaccines are not mandatory but they are the best way to protect yourself and others against the transmission and effects of Covid-19.

Vaccines are now available to

  • anyone aged 16 and over
  • anyone aged 12-15 living in a household with someone who is immunosuppressed.

Getting vaccinated if you can is the quickest way to help protect yourself and others around you. Find your nearest vaccination site here.

Will the college arrange my vaccination?

Kidderminster College is unable to book vaccine appointments on behalf of students.

Eligible students will usually be invited through their GP surgery to book a vaccine appointment if they are registered. You can also request to book an appointment online if you have an NHS number, or by calling 111.

There are also many drop-in vaccination sites and pop-up centres where you can attend without an appointment and without an NHS registration. Find your nearest site here.

Colleague and Student Reminder:

If you, or someone in your household symptoms or tests positive, DO NOT ATTEND campus.

If you develop symptoms you should self-isolate for 10 days before returning to campus and get tested wherever possible. You should not return to campus until you receive a negative test result or your isolation period has finished. If someone within your household tests positive you should self-isolate for 10 days from the onset of their symptoms.

Full guidance on this is available on the NHS website