Update 26th March

Message from the Carmel College Pastoral, Safeguarding and Learning Support Teams –

We hope are all safe and well.

In terms of the pastoral support currently on offer, the college priority is safeguarding and the welfare of our students.

All of our students who fall into the government’s vulnerable categories have been contacted by the college. They have all chosen to study at home and risk assessments are being implemented for this, alongside contact with all relevant professionals and agencies.

We understand for some students this is an especially difficult situation. We have therefore implemented a Pastoral Support system via email or telephone. The college has also shared a great guide with students to help them throughout this time.

Thanks and take care

Update 25th March

For those students who have applied to join Carmel in September 2020, please keep an eye on your inboxes as we will be sending out information and guidance soon. Also, as the college is currently closed, please do not ring the admissions department by telephone if you have a query. The team will answer queries via email – admissions@carmel.ac.uk

Update 24th March

Following the government announcement last night, the college will now be closed completely until further notice. Staff will still be contactable online via email should you need to get in touch.

Update 19th March – 

Dear Students, Parents and Guardians

We wish to thank everyone for the continued outstanding support and commitment our students, parents and guardians have all shown to our Carmel community. In light of the Government’s announcement last night requesting that schools and colleges close to students from Friday, we have made the following decision with regards to Carmel’s operation.

Most importantly we are informing all students, parents and guardians that we will finish all face-to-face teaching from 4:05pm Thursday 19th March until further notice.

This will enable staff on Friday 20th March to collate information and have accurate records and evidence of the hard work students have done in college. This is required so that we can ensure that when requested by exam boards we can provide fair and accurate records so that all of our students will gain the credit they deserve. You will appreciate that with nearly 2,000 students this is a considerable task. Staff will also be working to provide high quality learning resources and to put in place subject support. These will be available through our online platforms.

We still have not received precise detail about how students will complete their qualifications, though there has been confirmation that this summer’s exams will not be taking place. It is likely that universities (and colleges in terms of year 11) will work to honour the offers they have given students. We will do everything we can to ensure that Carmel students will achieve the results they deserve to support their progression. We will continue to update you if and when we get more information.

As soon as possible we will share with you all guidance about how students can access online subject materials, as well as guidance on learning from home and who and how to contact if more help is required.

Please be assured that we are putting in place procedures to ensure students in receipt of bursary or free school meals will be supported and have access to their appropriate allocation of funds. The Pastoral, Foundation learning and Additional Learning teams are also putting in place procedures and support packages for our learners with specific needs.

We are then proposing to close the college to all until Tuesday 24th March.

From Tuesday 24th March until provisionally Monday 20th April the college will only be open for staff who need or want to be in college from 9am to 2:30pm Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

The college will remain closed to students for this period but staff will be available during the days and hours listed above. They will provide support online or over the phone.

Of course, there will be questions and queries about these changes to the college operations. We will try and ensure that we have meetings and effective communication channels that will allow students to ask questions, receive clarity where it exists and most of all to be reassured. This is a fast moving and changing situation and no doubt we may have to make further adjustments to the operation of the college.

This has been a difficult decision to make, especially in light of the lack of clarity over the detail of the announcement made last night. We have made this decision in what we feel is the best interest of our Carmel community. The college will remain open for staff and we will therefore continue to communicate with you all and be able to offer support online or via the phone.

We wish to thank all the staff at Carmel for their professionalism and commitment to ensuring we support all of our students through this challenging time. Many of the staff will be in college again next week working, under difficult circumstances, to ensure we can maintain as much of this support.

To our Upper 6th students; we hope that we will see you again in the summer and our Careers Team will support you then when the situation is clearer with regards to university entries and other progression routes. You have worked so hard over your time at Carmel and deserve the best. Your work will not be wasted. Have confidence and know you have our support. You have the world at your feet and you can still chase your dreams once this crisis has passed, which it will in time.

For all in our academic community, would you please consider sharing our Carmel spirit around your family and neighbourhood in whatever way is healthy and safe? Help out people who are vulnerable. Keep in touch with elderly residents. A number of the supermarkets are currently asking students to consider temporary work to help them feed the nation. Whatever you choose to do, do it with compassion, a generosity of spirit and in a way that keeps you and those around you safe and healthy. As we settle into this new regime the College will be looking at how we can carry on our charity and social action work, so look out for our updates.

Thank you for your continued support.

Paul Rooney, Chair of Governors