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Covid-19 virus: Guidance for Parents and Students

UPDATED 6/7/2020 - 11AM

Frequently Asked Questions

These are updated FAQs effective from 11am on Monday 6th July 2020.

There are the following changes from the previous version of FAQs:

  • Updated answer concerning the wider opening of the College Campuses for students and staff
  • Updated answer concerning the opening of the College campuses for students and staff in September 2020

Q. Is SCG open?
A. Shrewsbury Colleges Group will be open until Thursday 9th July for the small number of students who are attending to ensure that they stay up to date with their studies and those students who have been completing technical and professional qualifications will not be required to attend beyond this date.

We will continue to be open for a short period of time during the summer months for the vulnerable students who have been attending college since lockdown and for students to complete their technical and professional qualifications.

We have only opened the London Road campus at this time.

There are only limited catering services on-site at this time.

We have worked with the students who have been invited in to determine the most appropriate travel arrangements to the London Road campus.


Q. What are the plans for SCG re-opening for the new Academic year starting in September?
A. Following the latest Government advice issued on Thursday 2nd July, we are working toward a full re-opening of the three campuses for all 16-19 years old students and with a full timetable in September 2020.

We are looking carefully at several options for the full re-opening of the College in September while maintaining student and staff safety.

We will continue to be guided by the Government and Public Health advice with regards to the social-distancing protocols and how these requirements can be accommodated across the three campuses of Shrewsbury Colleges Group.

Student and staff safety remains our primary concerns, and therefore we will take steps and measures to ensure that risks are minimised.

We will continue to update students and parents as the situation becomes clearer.


Q. Will SCG change the entry criteria and policy for Year 11 students?
A. Understandably, there are some concerns from students who are planning to study at SCG from September 2020 onwards about the entry criteria and policy for subjects.

We appreciate that this is a difficult time for students who were due to sit their GCSEs this summer, and they may have concerns about the award of their GCSE grades and what that will mean for their application. We have published some guidance on our applicant entry requirements which can be seen here.

We are here to assist all students whatever their GCSE grades outcome. We offer a broad range of subjects and courses and we will work with students to determine the best pathway for them.

Q. Is SCG open for Adult learners?
A. Shrewsbury Colleges Group has been able to offer additional study support for students on academic and vocational courses in line with Government policy. This small number of students are attending the London Road campus to access facilities and support as well as complete assessments, but they are not attending classes.

The current guidance from the Government is that adult students taught in discreet groups should not be returning to an educational setting at this time. This means that unfortunately we cannot yet invite Adult students to return to our campuses.

Q. What will happen with A Level and GCSE exams as well as BTEC assessments?
A. Ofqual, the exams regulator, has published further information regarding how A-Level and GCSE grades will be awarded to students this summer. They have also published the linked letter to students to explain what will happen and to try and answer any questions. Please read the letter carefully here.

Ofqual aims to ensure that the awarding of grades is fair to students and that the process supports their progression to university or into employment or an apprenticeship. The College will now be asked to provide the grade in each subject we believe that the student would have achieved if teaching, learning, and exams had happened as planned. We will also be asked to provide a rank order for all students with the same grade.

To determine grades for each subject we have been asked to consider a range of things like classwork and homework; results in assignments and any mock exams; any non-exam assessment or coursework students might have done; and general progress during the course(s).  

Students do not need to complete additional work now and any assessments completed will need to be considered alongside the much greater evidence of progress over the course. Completing the course content for each subject is still important, however, because the knowledge or skills might be useful in the future at university or in a job. Ofqual and the exam boards will then use this information to standardise grades across schools and colleges, to make sure that, as far as possible, results are fair and that students are not advantaged or disadvantaged because their schools or colleges are more generous or harsh than others. 

This does mean that the final grade could be different from the one college submits. It is also why Ofqual has told us that the college cannot tell what grades we have submitted.

Please, therefore, do not ask teachers, tutors or any other member of staff as they will not be able to give any further details.

If students are not happy with the final grade there will be an opportunity to take the exam in the autumn term as soon as it is possible to do so.

We will update students and parents as further information becomes available, including details about vocational and technical qualifications, so please keep an eye on our website.

We have had further guidance from Ofqual on how the grading will be applied to the various vocational courses that we run. Ofqual has said it will be down to each awarding organisations to determine their approaches and as we work with many different bodies, we are working to determine the grading processes for each of these.

To date, we have received guidance from most awarding organisations and we’re working to determine the grading for the courses under these various award bodies.

Q. Will the library (LRC) be open?
A. The Learning Resource Centres at English Bridge and London Road are open now for the returns.
There are no book returns at Welsh Bridge, however, all Bridges Campuses students can return resources to English Bridge on the following days and times:

Friday 3rd July – 10am until 1pm
Friday 10th July – 10am until 1pm
Friday 17th July – 10am until 1pm

There is following a one-way system from the back door in car park. Students can also collect Biology, Chemistry and Physics books purchased on ParentPay.

The arrangements for returns at London Road are as follows:
Thurs 2nd July – 10am until 1pm
Fri 3rd July – 10am until 1pm
Thurs 9th July – 10am until 1pm
Fri 10th July – 10am until 1pm

We have also arranged for books and resources to be able to be returned at the following schools until 13th July:

      • Telford Priory
      • Haberdashers Abraham Darby School, Madeley
      • The Grove, Market Drayton
      • Bishops Castle Community College

If you have any questions about renewing books and other resources whilst College is closed, please send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

This email inbox will be monitored daily as our LRC team will be working from home.

Q. How will SCG support students who would receive free meals?
A. At the moment, we have yet to hear whether the extension to the free meals scheme into the summer holidays will be extended to colleges as well as schools. This follows the Government announcement on 17th June. We will advise on this situation when we know more.

The equivalent amount of money that would cover free college meals will be made as payments into bank accounts.

Payments are now being made and will be available in bank accounts in the next few days. We have access to the Free College Meal Voucher service from Tesco and Morrisons, anyone wanting to find out more please contact the Student Services Team by email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We appreciate that this is a difficult period and we are providing links to the following Foodbanks resources that may be able to help families during this period:

Trussell Trust Newport & Market Drayton areas

Telford Crisis Support They can offer gas and electric support too

Telford & Wrekin Council Resources in the Telford area

Shropshire Council Resources in the Shropshire area

Q. What do you mean by ‘Vulnerable students’?
A. The official advice is that Vulnerable students are those students who have a social worker OR those students with an educational health and care plan (EHCP) OR those with safeguarding and welfare needs.

Students who can be safely looked after at home or who do not fall into one of these groups should remain at home or another safe place.

We have contacted students who are considered Vulnerable to discuss attending college. If you have not been contacted and consider that this may be the safest option for you, please contact us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Q. Is it compulsory for Vulnerable students to attend SCG?
A. No, as some students will have underlying health conditions that will prevent them from attending and others may be able to be looked after safely at home. However, we will support all our Vulnerable students as well as the wider student population as best we can.

We have contacted students who are considered Vulnerable to discuss attending college. If you have not been contacted and consider that this may be the safest option for you, please contact us on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Q. How will I know if my son or daughter is attending college as a Vulnerable student

A. On each day that they attend we will contact you as a parent/ carer to confirm attendance.  If you are not receiving confirmation and think that your son or daughter should be attending, please contact Steve McAlinden on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Q. How can students access online resources to continue their education?
A. Students will continue with their education via online platforms. Information on tasks and course content will be available online and students need to contact their course leaders and teachers for further information.

Further guidance on home learning for students can be found here.

We expect all students to continue their studies as this work may be used as part of the assessment process for the student’s final grades. We firmly believe that education is about learning and not just teaching to pass a test and would encourage all our students to continue their studies to the best of their ability.

Q. What will happen with Apprenticeship assessments?

A. Following the updated announcement by the Prime Minister on Sunday 10th May, some Apprentices will start to return to work in certain industry sectors. This is only advisable where it can be done safely and with proper preparation.

The employer will inform Apprentices if they are to attend work.

If the Apprentice is not returning to work, then the Apprentice should contact their Assessor for further details and plans for their ‘off the job’ element of their Apprenticeship.

Assessment and reviews will take place remotely over a phone call, skype, Zoom or similar. This can be agreed on an individual basis between the company, apprentices and assessor.

Further information on Apprenticeship and the Covid-19 virus situation

Q. How will company closures affect Apprentices?
A. Following the updated announcement by the Prime Minister on Sunday 10th May, some Apprentices will start to return to work in certain industry sectors. This is only advisable where it can be done safely and with proper preparation.

The employer will inform Apprentices if they are to attend work.

If the Apprentice is not returning to work, then the Apprentice should contact their Assessor for further details and plans for their ‘off the job’ element of their Apprenticeship.

Further information on Apprenticeship and the Covid-19 virus situation

Q. What will happen with work experience placements?
A. We are continuing to suspend all work experience placements until further notice. Students should contact their course leader or tutor in terms of the continuation of their academic work and their work experience co-ordinator if they have queries specific to their placement.

Q. My son/daughter was due to go on a trip with SCG in the near future, will I get a refund?
A. We have processed all refunds relating to trips organised by SCG. If you have not received your refund, then please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the title of Trip Refund.

Q. Will I get a refund on the travel costs to SCG that I have committed to for my son/daughter?
A. We are now refunding the full amount that we receive from the bus companies for any Summer term passes that have been purchased. Please allow a few days for the money to reach bank accounts.

Q. What should a student do if they don’t have access to the online platforms?
A. Students should inform their teacher who will arrange for printouts of the work to be completed at home and given to the student.

Students who have been unable to attend college should email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. detailing their name, course details and teachers. The work to be completed at home will then be printed and will be available to collect from London Road campus reception or will be posted to the student directly.

Q. Can vocational or creative academic course work be done from home to allow qualifications in the summer?
A. Individual course leaders will determine the nature of the online studying and course work to be submitted.

A number of organisations have some excellent resources on mental health considerations relating to the Covid-19 virus outbreak: