COVID Re-Opening Plans – FAQs

If you’re returning to College in February, March or April you may have some questions.

Below are some questions we’ve been asked – we hope you find them useful.

Please note, these FAQs will be updated as often as we can, so please check this page regularly. If you have anything specific that you don’t feel has been addressed – please email Marketing@wcs.ac.uk.

Covid-19 FAQ

There are many factors that can change timetables at this time, including guidance from Scottish Government on COVID and social distancing requirements for colleges.  We understand that students who have children or other caring responsibilities may be concerned about how their college course can fit in with life at home.  Where it is possible, we will try and fit your college timetable in to meet your caring and employment requirements.

We will make every effort to support you accessing computers and software that you need to complete your studies at home.  We understand how important this will be to enable you to study. We can also support you if you need to develop your skills in using computers.  Please check Myday and the Student Intranet for further announcements.

Yes, in line with recent government guidance, it is mandatory for students to wear face coverings in all indoor classrooms, workshops and communal areas on our campuses -even where 2 metre social distancing can be maintained. If you refuse to wear a face covering and do not have an exemption, then you will be told to leave the Campus immediately.

If student behaviour towards any member of staff who is challenging the absence of a face covering is deemed to be unacceptable, the Student Disciplinary Procedure will be applied.

Of course, some students will be exempt under the Scottish Government’s guidelines. Anyone who has an exemption from wearing a face covering should have evidence of this in the form of a WCS exemption card and lanyard.

To register for an exemption card and lanyard CLICK HERE.

There are many factors that can change timetables at this time, including guidance from Scottish Government on COVID and social distancing requirements for colleges.  We understand that students who have children or other caring responsibilities may be concerned about how their college course can fit in with life at home.  Where it is possible, we will try and fit your college timetable in to meet your caring and employment requirements.

Over the last few months, key stakeholders have worked together to develop a number of necessary changes to the assessment, and quality assurance procedures for Higher National, and vocational qualifications in 2020-21.

Colleges continue to work productively and positive discussions are ongoing to confirm an agreed assessment contingency approach for 2020-21, that takes into account the different operating environment in which colleges and other centres are currently working, and maintains the integrity of certification.

There are no outcomes from these discussions yet, but this work will continue and all involved are keen to ensure that arrangements are developed that reflect the challenging situation we’re in.

We have already been providing ongoing support online to students during COVID lockdown, including providing learning support and counselling services.

More information will be provided to you about accessing these services in your pre-course induction. In the meantime, if you have any particular question, you can contact us:

    • Student Funding: student.funding@wcs.ac.uk
    • Student Services: info@wcs.ac.uk
    • Students’ Association: sa@wcs.ac.uk

We are looking at how we can continue to give students the chance to gain work experience as part of your course (where applicable). We will work closely with our placement providers to agree when and how students can safely go out onto work placement in line with the appropriate guidance. We are also looking at other ways for students to gain the skills required by employers until they can safely go to the work placement. We will share more information about the plans as they progress.

Please continue to engage with your learning during the time our buildings are closed, keeping your teaching teams informed of any difficulties will ensure they are can support you during this time and ensure appropriate measures are taken so your funding is not affected.

There are many factors that can change timetables at this time, including guidance from Scottish Government on COVID and social distancing requirements for colleges.  We understand that students who have children in school may be concerned about how their future college course can fit in with amended school pupil attendance patterns in place in the autumn.  We are working on timetabling for all courses and will confirm with students when we can, but this is likely to be in August.  Where it is possible, we will try and fit your college timetable in to meet your caring and employment requirements.

At present some of the practical learning can not be covered. We will aim for this to be still be completed during this session but the current uncertainty around COVID means this is difficult to guarantee. As a College however, we will aim to provide you with every opportunity to complete your qualification.

Our curriculum teams continue to make adjustments that are required to be put in place due to the COVID situation but they will also ensure you get the best possible learning experience to enable you to progress to the next level of learning or into employment. Your learning experience may be different to those who studied the course previously but we are working to ensure it is of the highest quality and the alternative attendance patterns and use of technology could make parts of it even better and enable you to develop a wider range of skills.  We will still ensure, even when studying at home, your course is as interactive as possible, and you work collaboratively with other students and don’t miss out on the social elements of learning.

Currently our buildings are closed for classes until 31st January 2021 – all classes will be delivered online; your teaching team will be in contact directly to confirm how to access your classes or continue your learning.

When our buildings reopen, each team will get the right solution for the students on their courses. We will still need to limit the number of people on a campus at any given time so we can adhere to social distancing guidance. That means that at least some of your classes and learning will continue to be done off campus, supported by a mixture of learning materials, project working, online lessons and tutorials. The type of learning activities will vary depending on your course.

January/Winter course are planned to go ahead.   You will receive more information over the directly from your teaching teams before your course starts with a Pre-Course induction to help you prepare for college and to let you know what to expect.  Further College Induction materials are available: http://student.westcollegescotland.ac.uk/index.php/induction/