The measures for combatting the spread of Coronavirus, and the knock-on effects on schools, colleges and education, is rapidly changing and can be difficult to keep on top of.
On this page, we have compiled below our latest and essential information, information from central government and Oldham Council, to help you quickly find the answers you need.
Student and Parent/Carer update: 24/03/21
Dear Parents and carers
As promised we are writing to confirm arrangements for next week. Next week (w/c Monday 29th March) we are continuing with our phased approach to students on site while students get into a routine of home testing. Year 12 students will all be in college. Year 13 and Level 2 students will be working remotely from home with the exception of students from some practical subjects (see table below). These students will be emailed separately.
By the end of this week all students will have had the opportunity to have three assisted tests and collect home testing kits.
This week and next week, we have a small drop-in testing facility available in the main building, on Monday and Thursday, 10am – 1.30pm (entry via the entrance opposite the Sports Centre, next to the lecture theatre). This can be used by anyone onsite who has missed any of their three tests.
Students working remotely this week should have had their second and/or third test(s) at a community testing site
this week, followed by the collection of home test kits from the Science Centre. No booking is required at the community sites for asymptomatic testing, but students should inform staff there that they are students at OSFC. College should be notified of the test results using this form
. College should also be telephoned if the result is positive.
The latest guidance from the Department of Education recommends students:
- test twice a week at home from now on
- continue to test twice weekly over the Easter holidays
- report results online as positive, negative or void
- test before returning to college for the summer term, either the night before, or morning of, the first day back, to find and isolate any positive cases
Two tests should be completed at home each week, 3 to 5 days apart, ideally on Monday and Thursday mornings. Students are being given a full instructional leaflet when they collect their home test kits. It is this leaflet that should be used and not the instructions contained within the test kit box – that should be discarded.
A positive result will need to be confirmed by a PCR Test, however you should self-isolate immediately and follow public health guidance. You should also inform College on 0161 287 8000.
Test and Trace support payment for parents
Parents and carers of children who have been advised to self-isolate by their education setting or by NHS Test and Trace are now able to apply for a Test and Trace Support Payment or discretionary payment of £500, if they meet the eligibility criteria. The extension of the Test and Trace Support Payment scheme ensures that parents receive the financial support they need if they are unable to attend work due to childcare responsibilities.
Covid absence reporting
Students should not attend college and self-isolate immediately if they, or a member of their household, displays symptoms of a high temperature, a persistent cough, or loses their sense of smell or taste (or if they have been asked to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace).
Arrange a PCR test and inform the college by calling 0161 287 8000 (Mon-Fri 8am-5pm) or emailing email@example.com, if out of hours. Inform college as soon as possible when the results are received, whether it is negative or positive. If the test is positive, guidance for possible or confirmed cases.
Suzannah Reeves and Pam McIlroy
Bursary support during COVID
Bursary remains open for new applications all year. The process is fully online and all the information needed about applications and eligibility is available at www.osfc.ac.uk/support/bursary
The half termly bursary payment is largely unaffected by COVID, though is still contingent on satisfactory attendance so students as always need to ensure they attend all classes virtually.
Eligible bursary students are entitled to Free College Meals while onsite and during weeks that students are offsite due to COVID restrictions, alternative arrangements will be made to ensure this support continues (via payments, vouchers etc).