Latest information and guidance about COVID-19 - Last update: 24 March 2021 3.30 pm

COVID-19 update

COVID-19 update

Last update: 24 March 2021

We are so happy to welcome back our students to campus!

We are doing everything we can to support our students back to face-to-face learning and in readjusting to structured days at college. Our personal tutors, our wider student support team and our teachers are here to support our students. We have worked hard to make the campus safe, please refer to our updated risk assessment below. 

Here’s some good news:  we have completed nearly 5000 asymptomatic tests. We hope this gives parents, students and the greater public some reassurance that the campus is as safe as it can be.  Below are our current LFD test stats.

LFD testing statistics

LFD testing statistics

A few quick things that we have ask of our students:

  • Attend all of your lessons!
  • Sanitise your hands when you arrive and before entering a classroom
  • Wear your face covering everywhere on campus
  • Do not congregate in groups larger than 6
  • Do not leave campus in groups – the rest of Stourbridge is still in a national lockdown

Risk assessment - March 2021

Covid-19 risk assessment - March 2021

Student guidance - March 2021

COVID-19 student guidance

COVID control measures 

To ensure our campus can remain open and is a safe environment, we ask all staff and students to follow our protective control measures.

Key principles for a safe campus:

  1. All staff must adhere to social distancing everywhere on campus.  Students must adhere to social distancing with all staff and with each other where possible.
  2. All staff and students are strongly advised to wear an appropriate face covering everywhere on campus. This includes when moving around campus, in communal areas, in corridors, in classrooms, in stairwells and toilets. We understand that wearing a face covering is not appropriate for all people, and we are sensitive to individual needs. If you would find wearing a face covering everywhere on campus difficult, please see our Medical Welfare Officer, Aimie Chatfield (in the Student Support Centre) so that she can ensure we support you appropriately.
  3. All rooms have been assessed for maximum capacity to minimise the possibility of transmission of the virus.  Staff and students will adhere to the maximum capacity allowed in all rooms across the campus, indicated on signage on every door.
  4. Students are organised in year group ‘student bubbles’, with separate social, study and eating spaces.
  5. Year 12 students enter and exit the college via the main entrance on Duke Street.  Year 13 students enter and exit the college using the gates on the Lower High Street, next to Cats Protection charity shop.
  6. Visitors to campus are strictly limited; all proposed visitors must be approved by the Principal prior to their visit.
  7. We carry out regular, thorough deep cleans of the campus and we have enhanced cleaning and sanitisation during the day.
  8. Protective measures are in place aimed at reducing the risk of transmission.
  9. We all have a responsibility to understand the arrangements and work together to ensure they are effectively implemented.

Please remember that we keep all safety and control measures under constant review and, therefore, our plans are subject to change.

LFD home testing - guidance for students

When?

You should perform a test twice a week from 21 March. The best times would be Sunday evening and Wednesday evening. You need to keep testing every week through the Easter break.

How?

The instructions for how to conduct the test are in the booklet that we gave you with your kits. You should discard the instructions in the kits themselves. Please follow the steps carefully otherwise  the test may be void.

Reporting results

You need to report the result to both the NHS and to the college – this is very important.

To report your result to the NHS go to https://www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result and the process is very similar to the registration you did for your tests in college.

To report your result to the college please use your college email account and send an email to studentcovidtesting@kedst.ac.uk with the subject title “Test result” and simply the word “positive” or “negative” in the body of the email. Do not use this email address for anything else – all queries should be directed to covid@kedst.ac.uk.

What if my test is positive?

If your test is positive:

For more information

The Department for Education has produced a handy information page on home testing which you can access here.

Dealing with confirmed cases of COVID-19

Please find below information detailing how we deal with positive cases of COVID-19.

The health and welfare of the college community is of paramount importance to us.  

Students who test positive for COVID-19 must inform us as soon as possible by emailing us at covid@kedst.ac.uk.  This notification kickstarts our processes. 

What to do if you test positive for COVID-19:

  1. Email covid@kedst.ac.uk
  2. Provide the date you tested positive
  3. Provide the date of first symptoms (if you have any) and specify what the symptoms are
  4. Provide the dates of your self-isolation period (if you know them)
  5. We will contact you as soon as we can by telephone, in order to identify any close contacts in the college community and provide you with information about how we will support you during the period of your self-isolation

For each confirmed case, we work closely with Public Health England (PHE) to respond as necessary to this situation. This includes the important step of identifying those people who have come into 'close contact' with the infected individual and who must, therefore, begin a period of self-isolation. 

Only people who come into close contact with infected individuals will be advised to self-isolate and senior members of staff directly contact relevant individuals.  In line with government and PHE guidance, our approach will seek to balance identifying everyone who has a genuine risk of developing infection while not asking any students or staff to self-isolate unnecessarily.  

For those students who are identified as having come into close contact with an individual who has tested positive, we send a letter home to provide more detailed information (a copy can be found below).

What to do if you have been informed by the NHS that you must self-isolate:

  1. Email covid@kedst.ac.uk
  2. Provide the date the NHS has confirmed that you can return to college

Here is additional information from Public Health England:

Symptoms of COVID-19:

The most common symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are recent onset of:

  • new continuous cough and/or
  • high temperature and/or
  • a loss of, or change in, normal sense of taste or smell (anosmia)

 What to do if you develop symptoms of COVID-19:

  1. If you develop symptoms of COVID-19, you should remain at home for at least 10 days from the date when your symptoms appeared.  Anyone with symptoms will be eligible for testing and this can be arranged via https://www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test or by calling 119.
  2. All other household members who remain well must stay at home and not leave the house for 10 days. This includes anyone in your ‘support bubble’.  The 10-day period starts from the day after the first person in the house became ill.  Household members should not go to work, school or public areas and exercise should be taken within the home. If you require help with buying groceries, other shopping or picking up medication, or walking a dog, you should ask friends or family.  Alternatively, you can order your shopping online and medication by phone or online.  Household members staying at home for 10 days will greatly reduce the overall amount of infection the household could pass on to others in the community.
  3. If you are able, move any vulnerable individuals (such as the elderly and those with underlying health conditions) out of your home, to stay with friends or family for the duration of the home isolation period.
  4. For most people, coronavirus (COVID-19) will be a mild illness.  If you do develop symptoms, you can seek advice from the nhs.uk website at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/check-if-you-have-coronavirus-symptoms/
  5. If you are concerned about your symptoms, or they are worsening you can seek advice from NHS 111 at https://111.nhs.uk/ or by phoning 111.
  6. For more information, please see the link to the PHE ‘Stay at Home’ guidance:  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection
  7. Guidance for contacts of people with confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection who do not live with the person can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-for-contacts-of-people-with-possible-or-confirmed-coronavirus-covid-19-infection-who-do-not-live-with-the-person
  8. Additional COVID-related information is available at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

How to stop COVID-19 spreading:

There are things you can do to help reduce the risk of you and anyone you live with getting ill with COVID-19:

  • wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
  • use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
  • wash your hands as soon as you get home
  • cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • put used tissues in the bin immediately and wash your hands afterwards

Rapid asymptomatic testing of staff and students who are attending college during the lockdown period:

The government’s asymptomatic testing strategy will help to break the chains of transmission of coronavirus in education settings. The asymptomatic testing programme is offered at college for staff and students; this will help us to identify asymptomatic positive cases.

The weekly testing of the education workforce  and the small number of students in attendance during the lockdown period has begun.  Individuals in attendance will be contacted and invited to take a test, after consent by the individual has been obtained.  Testing is voluntary.  Please note:  the asymptomatic testing programme does not replace the government’s current testing policy for those with symptoms. If you have symptoms, you should continue to book a test via the NHS website or by calling 119.  The current risk assessment for our test centre is available to view below:


Risk assessment - test centre

Please find below some new documents provided by the Council relating to:

Staying safe

Local testing sites (Dudley Borough)

How to get tested (Dudley Borough)

Test and trace

Symptomatic student information sheet

Advice for those who are clinically vulnerable can be found in the guidance on staying alert and safe (social distancing).

Office for students: Student guide to coronavirus

Department for Education coronavirus (COVID-19) helpline:  this helpline is available to answer questions about COVID-19 relating to education and children’s social care. Staff, parents and young people can contact this helpline by calling:  0800 046 8687

When should a student arrange a test?

To ensure that those with coronavirus are identified, while avoiding a huge increase in demand for tests from people without coronavirus symptoms, students should only be tested if: 

  1. they develop one or more of the main coronavirus symptoms: a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; or the loss or change of their sense of taste or smell; or
  2. they are recommended to get tested by a healthcare provider (e.g. GP or nurse).

If a student develops one or more of the main coronavirus symptoms described above, only they should be tested.  There is no need for the entire household to have a test, unless they are also symptomatic.

Students should not book a test if they do not have one of the symptoms detailed above, for example if they feel unwell with a sore throat, stomach upset or a headache. These students don’t need to book a test, although they may need to stay off college and seek medical advice through their GP or pharmacist as usual.

Face coverings

  1. Staff and students must wear an appropriate face covering if using public or college transport.
  2. Face coverings are required to be worn everywhere on site.
  3. Students with hidden disabilities who are exempt from wearing face coverings may register with Aimie Chatfield, our Medical Welfare Officer. Aimie will provide a yellow lanyard so that staff and our security guards are aware you are exempt from wearing a face covering.

Timetable for 2020/21

We welcomed all students back to college full-time from 7 September 2020.

To achieve this safely in accordance with government guidance, we have established  a new timetable, with staggered starts and finishes for each year group. Whilst we deliver all core qualifications on site, tutorial sessions are delivered online.  Personal tutors (PTs) conduct regular one-to-one meetings at college in their new office accommodation in Dr Johnson House.

Current timetable 2020/21

Travel to college

All students using public or college transport will be required to wear face coverings.

Further Guidance

As part of the college response to the pandemic, we have a dedicated section of our website, King Ed's Virtual . Please use this section of the website,  if we ever have to move to online learning, for example during a lock-down period.

We will continue to update the archive below, which lists COVID-19 student and parent updates that we send out via email

COVID-19 student and parent updates:

Please find below two short videos from the Principal and one from the NHS, explaining updated protective COVID measures:

Online education provision: information for parents

Process for testing positive for covid-19 during lockdown

Updated COVID measures from 2 November

Letter to parents confirming cases of COVID-19

Public Health England - letter to parents and guardians

Parent/Guardian Update 7 October 2020

Parent/Guardian Update 25 September 2020

Student COVID safety update 10 September 2020

Parent/guardian testing update 4 September 2020

Year 12 student and parent/guardian update 10 July 2020

COVID-19 phased return risk assessment June 2020

Year 12 parent/guardian and student update - 10 June 2020

Student update - 5 June 2020

Year 12 parent/guardian update - 21 May 2020

Year 13 parent/guardian update - 21 May 2020

Year 13 Parent/guardian and student update 21 April 2020

Parent/guardian and student update 20 March 2020

Parent/guardian and student update 19 March 2020

Parent/guardian update 16 March 2020

Student update 16 March 2020

Student update 13 March 2020

Student update 12 March 2020

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