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Important Updates, Information and Guidance

Update: 18th June 2021
Reintroduction of Face Coverings in Classrooms and Workspaces for Students

As you may be aware, there has been a significant rise in the number of new Covid-19 cases in both St Helens and the North West in recent weeks, with many being linked to the Delta variant.

The Liverpool City Region, which includes St Helens has been designated as an Enhanced Response Area, as Infection rates are rising rapidly. Many of the new reported cases are amongst young people and children, and evidence from Public Health England and others indicates that this rise will continue.

With the new Delta variant believed to be up to 60 per cent more transmissible, the wearing of face coverings in communal spaces and in classrooms remains crucially important. As a result, we are strongly recommending the wearing of face coverings in classrooms and work spaces, as well as in communal spaces on campus.

You may find the leaflet below useful with information on how you can get the vaccination locally.

Update: 14th May 2021
Government's Easing of COVID-19 Restrictions

You will be aware of the Government’s announcements on Monday 10th May 2021 regarding the easing of some COVID-19 restrictions in line with step 3 of the ‘Roadmap’ out of lockdown. These new changes take effect from Monday 17th May with specific changes for educational settings.

The College has carefully considered the changes to the DfE operational guidance for colleges, and from Monday 17th May, the following changes will come into effect:

  • Students will not be required to wear face coverings in classrooms and workshops, but can continue to do so if they choose to;
  • Students will still be required to wear face coverings elsewhere in College; and,
  • The College is recommending that all staff will continue to wear suitable face coverings where they are unable to maintain social distance, including in classrooms and workshops and in social areas and communal spaces.

Study programme students will remain in their bubbles with staggered starts and end times; adult students will continue with their existing blended learning timetables.

The College will review these arrangements at half-term (31st May - 4th June) and in the light of any new guidance from Government.

This is a critical time of the year for many of our students as the June deadline for submission of teacher assessed grades is fast approaching. The College is committed to mitigating any further disruption to your studies, and it is therefore critical that we remain vigilant if we are to avoid major disruption to your studies so close to the end of the academic year.

The College is concerned about the apparent low take-up of testing from students. Whilst we appreciate that you may be testing and not reporting this to the College, the number of students reporting testing results remains low.

Whilst the College cannot mandate testing, we would still strongly encourage all our students to test twice per week to protect your families, your friends and our College community.

We want to understand the barriers to testing and would like to ask that you please take part in the short survey that was issued earlier this week:

Update: 6th May 2021
Summer Assessment Arrangements 2021

  • Teacher assessed grades (TAGs) are awarded based on marked work from your course. They are an indication of your evidence of achievement and are not a prediction.
  • Not all courses will be assessed by TAGs. Your subject tutors will tell you if your course includes assessment using TAGs.
  • Your subject tutors will inform you which pieces of work are being used to determine TAGs. This will be a range of your work from this academic year 2020-21.
  • Your work will be marked and assessed, and the grades will then go through a moderation process to ensure they are fair, accurate and robust.
  • You will be told which pieces of work are being used for the TAG but we are not permitted to inform you of your TAG until results day.
  • Results days are 10th August for Level 3 qualifications (including A-Levels), and 12th August for Level 1 & 2 qualifications (including GCSE). More information about the distribution of results will provided by your tutors in due course.
  • If you have any queries after you receive your TAG, you will need to see your subject tutor in the first instance. You will also have the right of appeal by submission of an email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Please also see the copy of the ‘JCQ Guidance for students, parents and guardians’ regarding Summer Assessment 2021, upon which our procedures are based. Please note that whilst this document focuses on A Level and GCSE courses, the same principles apply to our vocational qualifications.

Tap/click here to view the JCQ Guidance for students, parents and guardians: GCSEs and AS/A Levels in England - Summer 2021.

Update: 16th April 2021
Cluster of COVID-19 Cases in Young People

St Helens Borough Council has recently issued a letter regarding a recent increase of COVID-19 cases, predominantly in school aged children and their families. Please take the time to read the below letter:

St Helens Borough Council Letter to Parents and Carers

Update: 31st March 2021
Return to full face-to-face teaching for all 16-18-year-old students

From week commencing 19th April 2021, all level 3 students aged 16 -18, that have still been following a split teaching model of remote and on-site delivery will return to full-time on-site face-to-face delivery.

Your Tutors will communicate this with you personally, and share any relevant information. Should you have any questions about this, please speak to your Tutors directly.

Update: 30th March 2021
Additional Home Testing Kits

All 16-18 students will be able to collect two additional test kits in their weekly tutorial or from their Progress Coach this week.

All adult students, higher education students and apprentices can collect two additional kits from the College libraries or their Tutor.

The kits received should ensure that students can continue to test twice a week at home throughout the Easter break.

It’s important that students continue to report positive, negative or void results on both the Government reporting portal and the College reporting portal:

Update: 22nd March 2021
Home Testing

Following the successful roll-out of our on-site COVID-19 testing programme, with over 3,000 tests administered since 12th March, St Helens College and Knowsley Community College has welcomed the safe return of staff and students to their campuses. As the next phase of the testing programme is for students to self-test at home, we are now ready to distribute the home testing kits.

Collecting Your Home Testing Kits

As mass on-site testing comes to an end, students now need to collect their testing kits from Monday 22nd March. It is advised that students should continue to test themselves twice per week, 3-4 days apart, before coming into College, in order to continue to reduce the spread of the virus and keep our College and wider community as safe as possible.

16-18-Year-Old Students

Home test kits will be made available to you in your weekly tutorial.

Adults, Apprentices and Higher Education Students

Home test kits are available for collection from the following locations:

St Helens Town Centre Library
Monday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 6.30pm
Tuesday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 6.30pm
Wednesday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Thursday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 6.30pm
Friday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm

STEM Centre Campus Library
Monday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Tuesday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Wednesday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Thursday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Friday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.00pm

Knowsley Main Campus Library
Monday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Tuesday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Wednesday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Thursday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Friday 9.00am – 10.30am | 2.30pm – 4.00pm

IAMTech Campus
Home test kits are available for collection from reception.

Kirkby Campus
Home test kits are available for collection from tutors.

The home testing kits contain easy to follow instructions to help you complete a test, and you may find the videos below useful:

Recording Your Results

It is important that students record their test result whether it is negative or positive, via the Government website and College form. Please see links below:

A negative result does not guarantee that you are not carrying the virus. Therefore, you should continue to follow social distancing and other measures to reduce transmission such as wearing a face mask, regularly washing your hands and observing social distancing.

If you test positive or anyone in your household/support bubble tests positive, you should self-isolate immediately for 10 days, in line with NHS Test and Trace guidance. You will also need to order a confirmatory PCR test and report your result to both NHS Test and Trace and the College.

On-Site Campus Test Centres

The College will continue to offer ALL students the opportunity to have 3 tests on campus up until Wednesday 31st March 2021 and bookings can be made via the following Eventbrite link:

After the Easter break, we will maintain two small test centres for those who are unable to perform tests at home.

Student Support

As always, we are here to support you, so should you have any personal concerns about home testing, please raise this with your Tutor or contact our Safeguarding and Wellbeing Team:

Thank you again for your support. Stay safe and well.

Simon Pierce,