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Bucksmore Covid-19 Measures for Summer Schools August 2020
Updated 15:38 8 July 2020
We’re hoping to run two limited courses in August, subject to changes in government measures. Below we have detailed the measures we intend to take to maximise student and staff safety in light of Covid-19.
We are constantly monitoring updated from the UK government. At the time of writing, the measures and practices described below are in accordance with what we believe to be the best possible interpretation of social distancing and other Covid-19 advice from the UK government. This will be constantly reviewed and updated as the situation changes.
Please note that these measures are intended to minimise the risk of spreading and / or contracting Covid-19. Bucksmore Education cannot guarantee that students will not be exposed to Covid-19, and parents and students must understand that they travel at their own risk.
Only students travelling from designated travel corridors based on UK government advice will be able to attend this programme. Any student who has been in a country outside of the listed countries in the two weeks before they travel will not be allowed to join the programme. If they arrive in the country and are required to quarantine because they have been in a country outside of this list, parents will be liable for the full cost of the accommodation and any extra quarantine measures required from Bucksmore Education.
Bucksmore will not allow any student (or staff member) with underlying health measures to attend the programme. These must be declared on the booking form, and the current list of students who would be considered at risk include:
- Anyone with a lung or respiratory condition such as asthma or bronchitis
- Anyone with an existing heart condition
- Anyone with diabetes
- Anyone considered clinically obese with a BMI of 40+
This is not a complete list, and Bucksmore recommends students consult with their doctor if they are concerned about any underlying condition.
A private taxi transfer will be provided for all students at no extra cost from Heathrow and Gatwick Airports. (Other airports and train stations may incur an extra supplement). All students will be provided with their own taxi and will not share with other students or staff. To prevent exposure as much as possible, Bucksmore staff will not travel to the airport and all students will be met by the taxi driver in Arrivals. All taxi firms will be vetted by the Bucksmore team to ensure they both meet student welfare requirements and have appropriate Covid-19 safety measures in place. Students will be required to wear face masks in the taxi at all times.
Students will be met at the centre by the residential Bucksmore centre team. Unfortunately, students will be required to handle their own luggage at all times (unless they need assistance due to age or health reasons).
Students will be housed in private boarding houses in Oxford, used year-round by Oxford International Education Group. All facilities will be operated by the Group rather than relying on external third-party providers.
All students will be roomed in single bedrooms for the duration of their course. If students from the same household are travelling together, they may share a bedroom if one is available.
Full information about cleaning procedures, laundry, and bathroom facilities will be provided shortly. All accommodation practices will be in line with those used by the boarding schools from September onwards and will be in line with the Boarding Schools’ Association COVID-Safe Charter.
Upon arrival students will form a “Bubble” with the other students on their course. This will be their core group during their time and will be their study, as well as their social, group. Lessons, meals, activities and excursions will all be within this bubble and there will be limited interaction with anyone outside of this core bubble. Bucksmore residential staff will also be part of this bubble.
Students should still maintain social distancing as much as possible within their bubble, and remain one metre away from all other students and staff whenever they can.
A one-way system will be in place for all areas used by students as well as social distancing markers that must be followed. A specific risk assessment is in place to minimise the risk of COVID-19 throughout the centre. This has been designed with the Oxford International boarding school teams.
Depending on total student numbers, mealtimes may be staggered to limit student’s interaction to only other students within their existing bubble. Serving staff will keep a 2-metre distance from students and have appropriate PPE. Students and staff will be required to wash their hands
We will try to run as normal as possible activity programme, with social distancing measures in place. Depending on government advice sports opportunities may have to be limited. Where shared equipment is used, all stationery and classroom facilities will be disinfected before use. Full information about the social programme will only be released a week in advance. The current timetable includes activities Bucksmore believes will be possible to run in accordance with social distancing advice currently recommended by the UK government.
Class size will be limited to no more than 11 students per class. Desks will be distance to allow at least 1 metre between students, with all students facing in the same direction. A Bucksmore pen and a notebook will be provided for all students and these must be used, and not shared, by the student for the duration of their course. We advise students to bring as much additional stationery as they think they might need to avoid sharing equipment with any other student.
Excursions will only be to open-air destinations and travel will be by private coach only. Students will not be able to sit next to each other to allow for suitable distancing whilst travelling. Students will be split into smaller groups when on the excursion to further distancing measures. No entrances will be included, and the majority of activities will be external walking tours. If the weather does not allow for outdoor walking tours, Bucksmore may rearrange excursions and planned activities to another day if the timetable permits. The daily schedule will be constantly reviewed and updated between the centre staff and Bucksmore Head Office.
Hand sanitiser stations will be set up in all accommodation, teaching rooms and the cafeteria. Regular hand washing will also be encouraged throughout the day. For younger students this will be monitored and mandatory. Bucksmore recommends all students to be familiar with handwashing procedures as recommended by the WHO before they travel: WHO Handwashing Advice.
Students will require masks to travel on the plane, and in the taxi before arriving at the centre. Therefore, students must provide and bring their own face masks. Bucksmore will have disposable masks available if a student loses theirs, but we strongly recommend students use their own. At the moment, Currently, Bucksmore will not enforce the wearing of face masks either at the centre, or while on excursions using private transport. However, this may change depending on government advice. It is advisable to assume that face masks may well be required throughout the programme.
Students will be able to mix socially with other Bucksmore students on their course, within their assigned bubble. However, social distancing measures should still be maintained at all times to minimise any risk. Staff will monitor students throughout the course to ensure social distancing is observed.
Students will not be given free time on excursions. However, the older age group may be allowed free time in Oxford at certain periods of the day. Bucksmore will require authorisation from parents to allow this, and this privilege may be withdrawn at any time if the government or Bucksmore regulations change. During free time, students must not come closer than two metres to any member of the public, or anyone outside of their bubble.
All staff on the course will be trained in how to deal with suspected COVID-19 cases. Both Bucksmore Head Office and the Centre Manager will keep up to date with all governmental, and appropriate body, advice to ensure guidance is followed. Staff will maintain social distancing measures with all students as much as possible, although student wellbeing and safety will always take precedence over social distancing if required.
Bucksmore will ensure all residential staff follow the same travel advice and health declaration requirements as students.
All students must complete a health declaration before departing to join the course. Students will need to confirm that they have had no symptoms of corona virus or been in contact with anyone who has either had corona virus, or symptoms, for 14 days prior to their departure date. If any student travels and does not declare this information they will liable for any costs incurred to quarantine and care for themselves or any other Bucksmore student or staff member.
If any student displays symptoms whilst they are on the course the entire bubble will have to -isolate and the student who has symptoms will be taken for a test. Should the test come back positive, the programme will cease immediately, and the entire bubble will have to self-isolate for 14 days at the school and will be looked after by Bucksmore staff members. If the test returns negative, the programme will resume.
During any period of enforced isolation, students will be allowed to remain in their boarding house. Meals will be brought to them, but they must not leave the house at any time. Students may still use shared facilities within the house, but they must maintain a distance of two metres from all other people at the same time and avoid being in the same room as anyone else as far as allowed. Again, student wellbeing and safety will always take precedence in any circumstances where a student requires care or assistance.
If students are required to isolate for a 14-day period (based on current UK government advice), accommodation and meals will be provided by Bucksmore. We will also assume duty of care for all students while they remain with Bucksmore. However, it is the parent or agent’s responsibility to rearrange all flights and travel arrangements out of the UK.
All students will be added to the Bucksmore insurance policy. The only exclusion is if students have to cancel or curtail their course due to COVID-19 they will not be covered by the policy. All other sections of the policy remain in force.
For further official advice about Covid-19 and up-to-date safety measures, you may wish to consult some of these sources:
All students and staff on the Bucksmore programme must sign a statement and a waiver declaring that they understand the risks involved in a residential programme, and that they choose to travel at their own risk.