The Bournemouth School of English takes the health, safety, and well-being of its students, staff, visitors, and homestay providers seriously.
This page has been created to tell you what we have done to reduce the risk from coronavirus, what the situation is like in England, and to give you links to important information online.
As a limited company and registered business operating in the UK, we are legally bound by government guidance; we regularly monitor public health advice, and react appropriately. Our school is also accredited by the British Council and a member of English UK and English UK South; we also receive industry guidance from these bodies, and use this advice to inform our procedures.
Following the easing of restrictions, we are able to reopen on Monday 3rd August 2020. We have performed a comprehensive risk assessment, and taken careful measures to limit the risk of exposing students and staff to coronavirus while on school premises.
It is, of course, impossible to remove all risk, or to make a guarantee that coronavirus will not affect anyone in the future.
Travelling to the UK
Before you arrive in the UK, you must complete a passenger locator form; you will need to present these details when you arrive in England.
The UK has established travel corridors with many countries, which means that many of our students can once again travel to England and move freely. This list of countries is being updated regularly, so it is important to check often.
If you travel from a country not on the list, or if you visited or made a transit stop in a country that is not on the list in the 14 days before you arrive in England, you will be required to spend a 14-day period in quarantine.
Students who are required to quarantine on arrival in the UK will need to stay in private accommodation before starting their programme; you should stay indoors and avoid contact with other people, even if you or they do not have symptoms.
This applies to all travel to England; by train, ferry, coach, air, or any other route. More information on self-isolating when you arrive in the UK can be found here.
We have put in place a number of measures to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff; you can find out more by watching this video, which we have made to introduce you to the school, and show you what we're doing to help encourage social distancing, maintain cleanliness, and keep people safe.
We are offering face-to-face lessons from Monday 3rd August 2020, but with a smaller number of staff and students. We are offering discounted prices on our 1-2-1 lessons for those at greater risk or with greater concerns.
You must complete our Health Screening Form on your first day at school, and we will take your temperature every day. There are signs and instructions around the school, and you must follow their advice at all times; this includes hand washing, social distancing, and using hand gel and disinfectant spray regularly.
We have created a separate entrance and exit, to avoid people passing too closely to each other.
Our reception remains open, but with a booking system in place for anyone needing to speak to office staff.
Class sizes have been reduced to a maximum of 6 people, meaning that students and teachers can be more than 1m apart in the classrooms. We will only use our larger classrooms for classes, and each class will be in a separate part of the building.
All classrooms will be well-ventilated, with windows and doors being kept open as much as possible. All classrooms are equipped with hand sanitiser, which students are expected to use regularly, and all surfaces will be cleaned after every class. Everyone will be responsible for cleaning their own area, so students and staff will be expected to help out.
Students will not be asked to share any books or materials; every student will be issued with a personal copy of any coursebook or handout that they may keep.
The common areas will be sanitised at the end of each school day, and the toilet facilities will be sanistied at regular intervals throughout the day.
In order to ensure social distancing, our computer suite will have every other work station operational, and the use of school bathrooms is limited to a maximum of one person at a time.
Hand sanitiser can be found in every key area, and everyone is encouraged to use it regularly.
Notices are on display throughout the building in order to encourage social distancing.
Wearing a face covering is not compulsory in school settings, but students or staff may choose to wear a mask if they want to.
As more students return to the school, we will stagger lesson times and break times in order to help maintain social distancing.
Any person who does not follow the school's health advice, or deliberately risks spreading infection, will be subject to our normal disciplinary procedure.
Homestay hosts will follow UK government guidelines to help keep you safe, and will clean and sanitise their home properly. The local residences are all independent businesses, so it's important to contact them directly if you have any questions about your booking, or the steps they are taking to reduce the risk from coronavirus.
Wherever you live, you will need to maintain social distancing and remember to wash your hands regularly. If someone you live with develops symptoms of coronavirus, you will need to stay at home for 14 days unless they get a test for the virus and it is negative.
We have temporarily suspended our social programme; we aim to bring it back as soon as possible, but it will be revised and reviewed regularly so that it is in accordance with government guidelines at all times.
Bournemouth is a tourist destination, but the town is still quiet at the moment. On sunny days, the beaches become crowded quickly, and we advise our students to avoid busy areas at all times.
The shops, pubs, and restaurants are re-opening slowly and carefully. Life is returning to normal, but it is a legal requirement to wear face coverings in shops at the moment.
When you arrive in the UK, there are three options for travelling to Bournemouth; you can choose to take public transport or you can ask us to organise a private taxi for you.
If you take public transport, you will need to wear a face covering. If you book a private taxi, you should tell us if you would like your driver to wear a face covering; your driver might also ask you to wear a face covering, and you should certainly expect to travel in the back seat of the car.
Travelling around Bournemouth and the surrounding areas is still possible and, in some ways, more enjoyable than normal. You will need to wear a face covering when you use public transport, but the buses and trains are not as crowded as normal, so you will feel more comfortable.
However you travel, please make sure you follow the safety procedures, and do what is asked of you. This is for your own protection and safety, as well as that of other people.
The most important thing is the health of our students, staff, visitors, and homestay hosts. It is vital that we all work together to make sure we are minimising the risks from coronavirus.
If you develop any symptoms of the virus, you must tell us immediately and stay at home. You must take a free coronavirus test from the NHS; until the results of this test have been received, you will need to stay at home, in self-isolation, and you will not be able to come to school. If your coronavirus test returns a negative result, you may return to school immediately. If your coronavirus test returns a positive result, you must stay at home for 10 days and not have contact with other people.
It is not normally necessary to self-isolate if another person at school develops symptoms, even if they test positive, but you will need to be very careful to wash your hands and maintain social distancing.
If you live with someone who develops symptoms, you will need to self-isolate at home for 14 days, or until they have received a negative test result for coronavirus.
If anyone develops symptoms of coronavirus, we will contact Public Health England and follow their advice; we will tell you if we believe you might have come into contact with someone who has developed symptoms, and will give you guidance on what you will need to do.
If you need to self-isolate for any reason, you must stay at home and tell the school what you are doing and why. We will help you as much as possible, and also speak to people for you if you want us to.
If you miss any classes due to self-isolation, we will allow you to rearrange these classes for another time.
We would like to take this opportunity to extend our sympathies to those who have been affected by coronavirus.
We will regularly monitor government guidance, and make updates to our procedures and this page accordingly.
We have made some important changes to our Terms & Conditions, in order to take into account specific coronavirus-related issues. Please do take the time to read these carefully.
Please ask if anything is unclear, and contact us immediately if you have any concerns about your health or the health of others.