College update: 08 October 2020
On Tuesday, the COVID-19 risk rating in Brighton & Hove was increased from ‘yellow’ to ‘amber’. This is in response to the confirmed cases in the city more than doubling in one week.
The threat of further government restrictions is looming with the likelihood of specific local restrictions being implemented if cases do not reduce. At this critical time we must all do everything we can to reduce the transmission rate and prevent the need for a local lockdown.
Within the College, we continue to work closely with the local authorities and follow all available guidance. We are reviewing the situation daily to allow us to respond quickly to any suspected cases as they are reported.
We have now had two separate instances where someone with a positive case of COVID-19 has been on one of our sites. In both cases, we have worked quickly to identify anyone who may have been in close contact with these individuals to advise them to self-isolate. We have also taken precautionary action where necessary to reduce possible transmission and protect our staff and students.
Should there be any risk that you have come into close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19, we will be in touch and advise you to self-isolate, as per the Government’s guidelines. If we - or the NHS Test and Trace Team - have not been in touch, you do not need to isolate unless you develop symptoms. Read more about this here.
At this time there is no need for us to increase our level of remote delivery. However, we continue to review this daily and we have a plan in place for a number of scenarios that we may find ourselves in over the coming weeks and months - read more about this here.
To enable us to effectively minimise the risk to our staff and students, it is vital that we are immediately informed of any suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 and receive copies of any test results. This includes where students are isolating due to members of their household having symptoms.
As a further precautionary measure, we have taken the decision to suspend all work placements until January at the very earliest. The only exception are those placements that form an essential part of a student’s qualification, which include early years, and health & social care. For apprenticeships, wherever possible, all assessors are working with their apprentices remotely to limit travel and reduce the risk of transmission. There will also be no trips or excursions until further notice.
We can all help minimise the risk of transmission by following the ‘Hands, Face and Space’ guidance; sanitising hands, wearing a face covering and maintaining social distancing. The NHS have released a short video as part of this campaign which talks through how these measures make a difference. You can watch this here.
The rate of infection is at its highest and still growing among young people aged 16-25, particularly when people from different households are socialising together. Please remember that social gatherings of more than six people are currently illegal.
Should you have any questions or concerns, please speak to your tutor as a first point of contact.
Thank you once again for your continued support of our college during these challenging times.