13th October 2020

This is a live page where we will share all our updates relating to COVID-19


*15/09/2021* Changes to Campus COVID-19 Health & Safety Procedures

To reduce risks of a COVID outbreak at large events, the university may require that those attending present a NHS COVID Pass.

The NHS COVID Pass will be a condition of entry for Matriculation on the 8th Oct 21, at Lincoln Cathedral. The NHS COVID Pass will not be required to attend regular classroom sessions or teaching activities in BGU campus.

The criteria to obtain a NHS COVID Pass is:

  • Have received a second COVID vaccination over 14 days prior or
  • Have a negative lateral flow/ PCR test within 48 hours of the event or
  • Proof you have had COVID in the last 6 months (Positive PCR Test).

Proof can be presented on:

  • The NHS App or
  • A letter from the NHS or
  • Proof of a negative test text message/email from the NHS

Further details on how the COVID Pass works can be found on the NHS website: NHS COVID Pass

Further information on our COVID secure measures can be found on BGU working together webpage: https://www.bishopg.ac.uk/workingtogether

From 16 August, you are no longer required to self-isolate if notified as a close contact with someone with COVID-19 if:

  • You are fully vaccinated - You have received both doses of an MHRA approved COVID-19 vaccine and at least 14 days have passed since your second dose.
  • You are below the age of 18 years 6 months
  • You have taken part in or are currently part of an approved COVID-19 vaccine trial
  • You are not able to get vaccinated for medical reasons

If contacted by NHS Test and Trace
You will be contacted to check if legally required to self-isolate or not:

  • You will be provided advice on testing and given guidance on preventing the spread of COVID-19.
  • You will be advised to have a PCR test as soon as possible.
  • Children aged 4 and under will not be advised to take a test unless the positive case was someone in their own household.

Follow this advice for 10 days after your most recent contact with the person who tested positive for COVID-19.

Note: if you have previously received a positive PCR test result in the last 90 days, do not arrange a PCR test - NHS direct on 111 can advise.

Not yet contacted by Track & Trace, but know a close contact has covid.

If you believe that you are a contact of someone with COVID-19 but have not yet been notified by NHS Test and Trace

  • for those fully vaccinated, the rules not requiring self isolation apply.
  • You can arrange a PCR test, even if you do not have symptoms.


If you develop symptomsIf you develop symptoms at any time, even if mild, self-isolate immediately, arrange to have a COVID-19 PCR test and follow the guidance for people with COVID-19 symptoms.


Reducing potential risks
Even if vaccinated, you can still be infected with COVID-19 and pass it on to others. If identified as a contact but are not required to self-isolate, you should still following guidance on how to stay safe and help prevent the spread. As well as getting a PCR test, you may also consider:

  • Limiting close contact with people outside your household, especially in enclosed spaces
  • Wear a face covering in enclosed spaces
  • Limiting contact with anyone who is clinically extremely vulnerable
  • Take part in regular LFD testing


Government guidance links are here:

Guidance for contacts of a person with a positive test result for coronavirus (COVID-19) who do not live with that person, Updated 13 August 2021

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


Stay at home: guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection, Updated 13 August 2021

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection#PCR



Risk Assessment

Attached is the latest BGU covid 19 Risk assessment which details our updated controls. Click here to download.

If you have any questions, please refer to:
Liam Robertson
H&S Officer
liam.robertson@bishopg.ac.uk

*19/07/2021* Changes to Campus COVID-19 Health & Safety Procedures

As a result of the recent government announcement to move to Step 4 of the COVID roadmap, BGU have updated our COVID Risk Assessment (click here to view). Although the government will remove many of the regulatory requirements, there remains a personal and social responsibility to keep each other safe. We encourage all staff and students to get double vaccinated and to continue taking twice weekly covid test (available from BGU reception).

As of Monday, 19 Jul 21 key changes on campus will be:

We will Maintain controls for: Staff, students and visitors will be expected to:

  • Take twice weekly covid test
  • Wear face coverings indoor unless medically exempt
  • Work in bubbles with a 50% capacity in office settings
  • Use hand sanitizer located at building entry points
  • Continue with our enhanced cleaning regime
  • protective screens at reception areas will remain
  • Cashless payment will continue
  • The Sports Hall will continue with a reduced capacity as wearing face covering during exercising is impracticable.

We will remove controls for:

  • Social distancing – Social distancing will revert to pre pandemic norms. Removal of associated signage, one way systems, spaced seating arrangements and equipment taken out of service can be reinstated.

We will Enhance:

  • Our understanding of ventilation risks by conducting an audit and make recommendations to reduce risks.

We will review our plans frequently; to confirm they are suitable, sufficient and workable. Next reviews are:

  • 16 Aug – Assess ongoing requirement for work bubbles, reduced sports hall capacity and table service in restaurants.
  • 16 Sept – Assess ongoing requirement for face coverings.

*11/06/2021* Home Testing Update

The issuing of COVID home test kits at BGU is on hold awaiting further government guidance.
Tests are still available for staff and students at our COVID test centre located on the topfloor of the Student Union. This can be booked via the home page or by clicking here.

Alternatively, Home Test kits can be collected from your local pharmacy, or ordered direct from the NHS https://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests.


COVID controls in place at BGU:

Hands The virus can be transferred between objects and hands
Clean or Sanitise when entering any building, or after touching shared objects.
Clean objects you touch
Sterilising of classrooms and other shared spaces after use.

FaceCover your mouth and nose to reduce droplets contaminating the air
Wear a face covering indoors when not within your social/ work bubble

SpaceMaintain distance from each other
Reduction in room capacities, including staggered work patterns.
Maintain 2m social distancing if possible, 1m+ with controls such as masks, barriers etc

Fresh Air – The virus is quickly dispersed in open areas.
Keep doors and windows open to increase fresh air circulation, or use mechanical ventilation.
If possible meet outdoors

If you have symptoms

If you have COVID symptoms, or have been in contact with someone who may be COVID positive you should NOT come to work:
Take a test COVID at the earliest opportunity,
Inform your line manager
Report via the self-reporting form: https://www.bishopg.ac.uk/workingtogether/covid-19-self-isolation-and-positive-result-declaration-form

*05/01/2021* Delay of Planned Return to Campus Following National Lockdown Announcement

In response to the announcement from the Government of a new national lockdown, and in line with our commitment to protect the health and well-being of our students and staff along with the wider community, Bishop Grosseteste University will delay the planned return of on campus teaching and continue with online delivery of programmes.

Please rest assured that the University remains committed to enabling students to complete their programmes and studies. Support will still be available both on and off campus whenever students require it.

The Office for Students has stated that: “Students will not be able to return to university, with students studying from their current residence, where possible, until at least mid-February”. While we strongly encourage you to remain where you are until your in-person teaching starts, wherever possible, we have also made provisions to provide appropriate support and facilities to the following:

  • International students who have remained in the UK and those who have arrived and do not have alternative accommodation
  • Anyone without access to appropriate study spaces or facilities in their vacation accommodation. This also applies to commuter students who should only access university resources if they have inadequate study spaces or require additional support such as mental health provision
  • Those of you who have remained in their university accommodation over the winter break, but we ask that you only utilise campus resources when you have to in order to reduce footfall on campus
  • Those requiring additional support, including those with mental health issues
  • Those of you on placements where the placement provider has COVID-secure measures in place, is permitted to open based on the relevant local restrictions, and is content for placements to continue
  • Researchers and research students who require access to specialist facilities for their work. If research students can work from home, they are encouraged to do so

These criteria will be updated in line with UK Government guidance.

If you plan to return to campus to spend the lockdown in your accommodation please inform us of your arrangements through the arrival booking system which can be accessed by clicking here. If you had planned to return and are now choosing to stay away from your accommodation please let us know through the same system.

Additional announcements will follow with more information on the full list of measures being put into action to support students. Alongside this we will be providing further updates on placements, academic support, assessments and accommodation.

We understand that this will be an unsettling period and we are doing everything we can to provide support. We would like to thank our University community for their incredible patience and professionalism in what is a difficult and changing situation.

We will be sending regular updates throughout the period to keep our staff and students informed of the University’s response to the situation. 

Please continue to look out for these updates along with checking the staff and student portals and University Coronavirus information pages:

We look forward to welcoming everyone safely back to campus as soon as possible.

*11/12/2020* New Year Return to Blended Learning and Lateral Flow Testing

The Government’s guidance is that the return to face-to-face sessions should be staggered over a 4-5 week period, with priority given to practical or placement based subjects, to help prevent the possible transmission of COVID-19 following the Christmas vacation period. In addition, Lateral Flow Tests will again be made available to students and staff in this period to help reassure that they are not returning with the virus.

For BGU this means that most programmes will continue to be delivered via remote learning for the first two weeks in January (beginning the 4th and 11th) to complete semester 1. This includes the planned assessment week beginning the 18th which does not require in-person classes.

A return to blended learning, including face-to-face sessions will for many subjects begin from the 25th of January with the start of semester 2. However, to facilitate the staggered return some subject sessions, as previously timetabled, will not start until the 1st of February.

Certain subjects are exceptions and will return to placements and in-person activities earlier. These include:

  • Programmes with ITE placements starting from 4th January
  • Some in-person sessions for Drama level 4 and Level 5 students

For specific information relating to individual programmes, Joint honours student should check the information for both their subjects as they may start back at different times. Additional information will also be supplied by tutors through Blackboard for students on exception courses needing to return earlier or later than the 25th January.

From the 4th January all of our student support services will remain available. You can find the full list of services and their contact details on our Working Together web page.

To help keep the return to learning a smooth process we will again be offering free lateral flow testing to all students and staff. As with the end of term testing this a voluntary process but we would encourage all members of our community to make use of it in the build-up to your programme’s return to blended learning. You can book your appointments by clicking here.

*13/11/2020* End of Term and Move to Remote Learning Announcement

Please ensure you read this message in full as it covers four important areas:

  • The University’s plan for moving to online learning
  • Arrangements for students travelling home
  • COVID testing on campus
  • Return to studies after Christmas

The first term of the 2020-21 academic year has been different from the usual university experience, but all of us at BGU are proud of how everyone has worked together, adapting to the new circumstances and applying themselves to their studies in the first semester. You’ve all worked incredibly hard and will, I am sure, be looking forward to the upcoming Christmas break.

We are aware that there have been concerns, highlighted in the press, about whether students will be able to return to family homes for the festive period. In previous communications the University wanted to ensure you and your loved ones can spend time together without the fear of transmitting the virus.

On Wednesday the Government published guidance for English universities and their students on how students can move to their family home at the end of this term. If you are planning to return to your family home over the Christmas break the advice from Government is that your journey should take place between the 3rd and 9th of December. Further information on the Government’s guidance can be found at Gov.uk or at the OfS.

Move to Online Learning

To facilitate the movement of students in line with government guidance BGU will be moving to full remote learning from Monday 30 November with all in-person classes on campus converted to on-line delivery.

Over the next two weeks blended learning will continue as planned but your lecturers will provide you full details of how sessions after the 30th November will be organised remotely.

This will be across all programmes, undergraduate and post-graduate.

For students who are on programmes with ITE placements (PGCE, PTS, BAPE and Cert/pGD ETS) scheduled to run up to the 18th December we are currently clarifying with the Department for Education (DfE) that these placements will continue after the 9th December. As soon as we have further guidance we will provide it. For now, to protect the successful completion of the ITE placement, please continue attending placement as planned and do not make arrangements to travel home until we have updated you.

We remain, as ever, committed to your academic success and throughout this period all the University’s Student Support Services will remain available remotely to you. Full details of our support teams can be found on the Working Together web page.

In addition, campus facilities, including the Library and Accommodation will remain open to all students who need to use them.

Arrangements for Students Travelling Home

To ensure this happens as safely as possible we would like all students living in BGU accommodation to contact our Accommodation Team (accommodation@bishopg.ac.uk) who will be organising set windows for you to leave in.

It is not compulsory for you to leave your accommodation over the Festive Break. If you would prefer to stay on campus your accommodation will remain open and available. Again, we would ask any students considering staying to inform our Accommodation Team.

If you are currently on an ITE placement and in University accommodation please can you let accommodation know that arrangements may be different for you. Once we have shared DfE guidance you can then update our accommodation service team.

COVID Testing on Campus

The University has made a successful request to operate Covid-19 testing for its students and staff on-campus to further help people return home with extra confidence. This will take a couple of weeks to set-up but the plan is to start testing from Monday 30th November. Testing is voluntary but we would encourage all students and colleagues to make use of it. Further details will follow over the next two weeks.

Return to studies after Christmas

The Government’s announcement on Wednesday indicated that further guidance would be provided soon for students returning back to campus after Christmas. Once the University receives this guidance we will share with you our plans for the return to campus and teaching and learning delivery in the new year.

Please be assured that the University is constantly reviewing all the guidance from Government and across the university sector to ensure all our responses and policies enable our learners to engage successfully with their studies.

Please continue to look out for regular updates via email as we will be sending out further information over the next week. If you have any questions before then please contact covid19advice@bishopg.ac.uk.

Thank you again for your patience and support both of which have been incredibly appreciated. We look forward to welcoming you back to campus in the new year.

*13/10/2020* Update: Can I still travel to campus if I live in a tier 2/3 (high / very high risk) area? Or just in a higher risk area?

In light on the newly published COVID-19 three-tier alert system from the UK Government, Bishop Grosseteste University would like to confirm with students and staff the arrangements for coming to campus from your home.

Tier 1 – medium risk

Tier 2 – high risk

Tier 3 – very high risk

It is possible that students and staff may live in an area that is in a different risk tier to Lincoln and the campus. According to the latest published guidance, students and staff are able to commute to their place of work or study regardless of which tier their home address is in.

Of course, if you are travelling to or from a higher risk area please remain vigilant, take the normal hands-face-space precautions and follow any specific guidelines for the higher risk area. We have a collective responsibility to limit the spread of the virus and we appreciate the ongoing efforts of the BGU community to achieve this.

Our COVID-19 FAQs document can be downloaded by clicking here.

Guidance on keeping safe on campus and what to do if you think you have symptoms can be found here: https://www.bishopg.ac.uk/workingtogether

The declaration form to access university support can be found here: https://www.bishopg.ac.uk/coronavirus-support

Our university Risk Assessment and Outbreak Response plan can be found here: https://www.bishopg.ac.uk/coronavirus-support/procedure-for-returning-to-campus

Information on current COVID-19 cases on campus can be found here: https://www.bishopg.ac.uk/coronavirus-support/current-covid-cases-at-bgu

If you have a question that you can find the answer to on these pages you can contact us via covid19advice@bishopg.ac.uk. We will contact you and determine how best to resolve the situation.

Thank you again for all your hard work over the last few months. By continuing to work together we will be able to keep BGU a safe and secure environment for everyone.

*09/10/2020* Update: Guidance about positive tests and local restrictions imposed by the UK Government

What happens if BGU is notified of a positive test?

The University has provided clear guidance on how we can all help each other to stay safe, socialising in groups of up to six and how to tell us if you need to self-isolate and / or get a test.

In the event of a member of the BGU community informing us of testing positive for COVID-19, the University will inform all people who may have been in contact with that individual.

Please note, if you are not contacted it is because you have not been in contact with the individual.

The University has put in place extensive measures to limit the spread of COVID-19, including enhanced cleaning regimes, increased handwashing and sanitising facilities, the wearing of face coverings and extensive signage to promote safe space and social distancing.

If you are required to self-isolate, we will provide advice and support on learning and teaching, living in accommodation and well-being during that period. We provide 24/7 mental health support to all students, and we encourage everyone who needs to, to use that facility and seek the support of staff including- Student Advice, Chaplaincy, the Students’ Union and tutors.

The University is aware of the ongoing press coverage regarding universities within the UK and is constantly monitoring the situation for our students. To ensure transparency, we will publish the live number of cases on a weekly basis on this webpage.

What happens if there are local restrictions in my area?

The University is aware that staff and students may live outside of the local area and therefore be subject to local restrictions. Unless staff and students are specifically advised by the government to avoid travelling from your local area the campus will remain open and the University will be operating as usual. If you are unsure about whether to travel to campus, please speak with your Programme Leader or Line Manager.

Further information on how BGU is responding to COVID-19 can be found here.