September Plans

Please find all the information you need for the start of term as well as a list of Frequently Asked Questions.

Will I be coming into college for lessons?


Lessons will be on site in college. You will come into college in your year group ‘bubble’ and this will alternate with online lessons. In effect you will have one week in college for all of your lessons followed by one week working remotely from home. The timetable will follow the exact same times if you are in college or working from home. This will alternate until we are given guidance that you can return to all lessons onsite. If you are a local student we strongly encourage you to go home between lessons where you can.

ID CARDS: once you have collected your ID card you will now need this to access the college building. For track and trace purposes as well as general safeguarding we need to know who is onsite at all times.

Key Dates


If you are a second year:
  • Progression review appointments: you will have one to ones in each of your subjects on the 9th and 10th September. THIS IS FACE TO FACE IN COLLEGE
  • Your new timetable will be available on MyVarndean on the 9th September
  • Teaching starts for you on 16th September IN COLLEGE
  • There are also catch up sessions in some subjects where you will be directly emailed about this from your teacher
If you are starting with us this year or progressing into year one:
  • Your induction session will be either allocated the 11th, 14th, 15th September. This is 2 hours with a tutor in a small group where we will give you all the information you need to get you started with us (including your timetable)
  • Teaching starts for you on 21st September IN COLLEGE
  • You will have Flying Start work to complete between enrolment and the first lesson
If you are a pre-advanced student (retaking GCSEs):
  • Your induction session will be on the 14th or 15th September. This is 2 hours with a tutor in a small group where we will give you all the information you need to get you started with us (including your timetable)
  • Teaching starts for you on 16th September IN COLLEGE

Why we are doing alternate weeks?


In response to the COVID-19 outbreak we have had to make lots of changes to fully safeguard you. Inline with government guidelines and the majority of sixth form colleges nationally we are keeping you in year group ‘bubbles’ so that you will only be in college at the same time as others in your year group. This means we can control the numbers of students onsite at any one time and that there is more space for you to distance when you are here. We have been directed by the Department for Education that we must minimise the contact between students.

If you need IT equipment or would rather work in College

We will be able to provide some IT equipment should you need it for the weeks you work remotely. If there are reasons you would prefer to be in college for your online lessons we can arrange this for you.

Wellbeing and Support

All of our well-being and support services are here onsite and you will be able to choose if you would prefer face to face meetings or online/ telephone meetings. Our well-being space is open for you to use.

Enrichment

There will still be many enrichment opportunities for you at college. Our Fresher&s fair will give you further details of this once term starts.

Study periods/breaks

If you live close enough we would encourage you to go home if you can. However, our library is open to students as well as room 18. This year we are also setting up the Hall and classrooms for you to use between lessons and at lunch and break time.

Catering facilities

Are available on site. We have made some changes to our café so we can accommodate more students safely. This includes a grab and go serving hatch and additional cold food/ drink outlets across the site.

Toilets

We have leased additional temporary toilets so we can minimise any congestion. You will also be able to use the facilities during your lessons to help with congestion. Your teachers are understanding of this.

Other Information Relating to Covid-19


Face coverings

These are not a requirement on site although some staff and students may choose to wear them. Many of our staff will wear see through visors. If you do remove your face covering onsite please ensure that you put it away in a case or small bag for hygiene reasons.

Public Transport/getting to college

You are required to wear a face covering on public transport. We have bicycle racks at college for you to store your bikes.

Physical distancing

Is still in place. There is an expectation for you to distance while onsite. We would really like to avoid a lock down so please help us by doing this!

What else we are doing to keep you safe


We have a very robust risk assessment to make sure we have thought of everything possible. In brief this includes:
  • Regular deep cleaning of the whole site
  • Cleaning continuously during the day
  • Hand sanitising stations
  • Reducing student contact onsite
  • New entry and exit system so we know who is onsite

Adult Education


We are looking forward to welcoming adult students back to college from September. To ensure social distancing and a Covid-19 safe environment we will be capping enrolments numbers for each course.

Our team is currently working from home but we will be in college from Tuesday 1st September. To enrol please email commed@varndean.ac.uk, call 01273 546604 or enrol online varndean.ac.uk/courses#adult

We have a number of courses to support anyone who is unemployed or wishes to learn a new skill. These include GCSE Maths, English, Biology, Spanish, Functional skills Maths and English, ESOL and courses in childcare and education. These courses are free for students on work related benefits or on a low income.