Latest information on Covid-19

As at 11am on Friday 30 July 2021:

  • There are five current cases of Covid-19 linked to the University.
  • Two of these individuals had been on campus in the period before their positive result.
  • When a student or staff member tests positive who has been on campus, we complete an internal Track and Trace process.
  • There is one case in on-campus accommodation.
  • Since September 2020, 225 previous cases have now completed their self-isolation and have recovered.

Working together to keep our campus and Winchester safe

As the University for Sustainability and Social Justice, the continued health, welfare and safety of our students, staff and global community is our number one priority as we all continue to tackles the challenges brought about by Covid-19. The information below is designed to provide information to our current and future students, staff, and the wider community.

We are continuing to work closely with NHS Test and Trace, Public Health England and our local authority partners.

We are communicating directly with those who need to change their actions in relation to potential contact with confirmed Covid cases. If you do not hear from the University or from NHS Track and Trace there is no need to change your behaviour at this stage.

If you have any Covid symptoms:

If you have a question about self-isolation or are concerned about someone self-isolating, please contact us via Covid Careline on 01962 827100. Alternatively, if your query is on-campus and urgent please call our 24/7 Site Stewards team on 01962 827666.

The University is continuing to respond to the Government’s latest guidance and therefore information and guidelines are subject to change. 

Page last updated: 30 July 2021

Report symptoms. self-isolation or gatherings

If you are a student or staff member experiencing any Covid symptoms, or are required to self-isolate because someone you live with has symptoms, or you have been instructed to self-isolate by the University or NHS Track and Trace

If you believe a gathering is planned or has happened which breaches the latest guidelines

Latest on campus plans and Covid testing

Plans for teaching and student support in September

Based on the guidance issued to universities, we are pleased to be planning to welcome you onto a vibrant, safe campus this September.

We are expecting to operate a ‘business as usual’ teaching timetable from Semester 1 of the 2021/22 Academic Year. This means we are planning for the following:

  • Your timetable will be face-to-face and on campus for most of your learning experience.
  • Except on distance learning courses, all students and staff are expected to be attending face-to-face. If a medical reason related to Covid prohibits this, please get in touch with your faculty.
  • Where student and staff feedback from last year indicates online elements would enhance your experience, your programme may choose to introduce a limited amount of online teaching as part of the standard offer. This means some limited aspects of your timetable may be online.
  • From September, other face-to-face sessions, such as student support appointments, can occur as normal.

We will continue to follow the latest Government guidance on social distancing and group sizes.

Our top priority is that you experience an enjoyable and safe time during the next academic year. We have robust plans ready to put in place should Government restrictions mean we need to shift to a blended learning approach.

No detriment measures 2020/21

We have developed a package of no detriment measures for the 2020/21 academic year, designed to help students by ensuring our assessment and progression processes are as fair as possible against the difficult and complex context of Covid. 

Students and staff can find more information on our package of no detriment measures, including self-certification of Extenuating Circumstances for Covid-related reasons and a safety net, by viewing this intranet page. 

Get vaccinated

We strongly encourage all staff and students to get your Covid vaccines as soon as possible to protect yourself and others.

You can book your vaccines on the NHS national booking system here. You may find it helpful to look at the NHS FAQs on vaccinations for students.

Face coverings

From Monday 19 July, face coverings are no longer legally required to be worn in teaching and learning environments or in communal areas.

However, we ask that all students, staff and visitors continue to wear face coverings when in University buildings in any crowded areas, where ventilation is poor or when moving around buildings where social distancing cannot be maintained.

The University recognises that for certain reasons some people are unable to wear face coverings. Where students and staff are unable to wear face coverings they are encouraged to demonstrate this by carrying an exemption card or downloading one to their mobile phone (available here).

Covid testing

Testing will be an important part of the next academic year. The Government expects students to get tested before travelling back to their university town and then to test once they are back. We expect students and staff to get regularly tested, twice a week.

We’ll give more information later in the summer on how testing will work for the start of term.

Right now, please do continue to test yourself regularly and report your results via the NHS website. If you are in Winchester, free home tests are available from the University, book using this form. Make sure to bring your student or staff card with you when you pick up your tests. We’ll scan this when we give you your tests so we can contact you in the unlikely case of a recall on any test kits. With this in mind, make sure your contact phone number is up to date on MyRecord (for students) or iHR (for staff).

Anyone in the UK can order free home test kits via the Government website.

Once you have your test kits, you should take a test twice a week at home. You should get a result in 30 minutes which you then report online.

If you have symptoms or test positive, please report this to the University using this form.

If you have a positive test result:

Staff on campus

Our plans for the gradual return to more normal work and study on campus over the course of the summer are in line with the latest Government guidance. We cannot wait to welcome you all back.

While social distancing restrictions have ended, we strongly encourage meetings to maintain social distancing or to be held on MS Teams, for the time being. 

We require staff to gradually return to the campus (on a rota basis for professional services staff) prior to the beginning of term in September. As social distancing has ended, the capacity in offices can return to full office occupancy when required. We have reviewed office spaces and can confirm that 1m distance can be maintained with full occupancy.

We will also be updating our Covid HR policy in relation to returning from travel to the Amber and Red list of countries.

In the meantime, please speak to your line manager if you have questions about how you should be working at the moment.

Supporting our students

We have always been passionate about providing a supportive and inclusive environment to help all students flourish and this has never been more true than in our approach to this academic year. Our student support services, including mental health and disability support together with careers advice are available, with online delivery.

Winchester Student Union will continue to provide exceptional student-led and student-delivered services to support the student experience: representing your voice; supporting you in your learning and welfare; and helping you access necessary and suitable welfare support.

If students need to self-isolate, we are here for you. We have Covid Care Groups and other outreach and support to help you if you are self-isolating.

Student Services are still here for you over the summer period

All teams are still offering scheduled appointments, both in person and online. Do reach out if you feel we can support you with your mental wellbeing, academic skills development, or other specialist support. If you are in Winchester you can book an appointment by dropping into the Zone between 10am and 3pm, Monday to Friday, or the team can be contacted by calling 01962 827341. If you know what service you would like an appointment with you can complete our request an appointment form. Appointments can be either online or face-to-face.

We know that many of you are delighted that the country is slowly coming out of lockdown, but we also know that for some of you this may be causing you some anxiety. As well as support from our Student Services team, don’t forget you can access the Fika Mental Fitness app, free of charge, to support you in developing the 7 skills of Mental Fitness. The app can be downloaded from Google Play, or the App Store. You can also access support via Togetherall, which provides a safe community to support your mental health, 24/7.

Financial support for current students

Our Student Support Fund exists to support students who find themselves in unexpected financial hardship. 

Email studentsandmoney@winchester.ac.uk for more information about our Student Support Fund.

Get in touch

If you can't find the information you are looking for, or you would like some more clairty, you can contact us in the following ways:

  • Calling the Covid Careline on 01962 827100
  • Replying to a Covid weekly newsletter if you are a student or a member of staff
  • Emailing ask@winchester.ac.uk 
  • Contacting your Faculty if you are a student or a member of staff

Health and Wellbeing

Latest government and NHS guidance

Everyone needs to follow the latest government and NHS guidance on health and public safety. Please see the latest government advice here.

Do you have symptoms?

If you currently have coronavirus symptoms (a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste) you must get tested. 

If you have symptoms you need to:

If you test positive, you must follow the advice you are given and self-isolate. Please also report to the University via the above links. Reach out if you need help either via Student Services or if you are University-Managed housing, via the Housing team.

Phone your GP or 111 if your symptoms are severe.

Potential higher-risk categories

If you are a student and you believe you are in a potentially higher-risk category and are concerned or anxious about this, please contact our Student Services team directly on studentservices@winchester.ac.uk   

All staff who are in categories that may mean they are at higher risk should complete a Covid-19 Risk Assessment for Staff in Higher Risk Categories ahead of any return to on campus working.

Covid guidance for pregnant staff and students

The NHS has specific information on pregnancy and coronavirus.

Women of childbearing age, or those who are pregnant or breastfeeding may like to also read Public Health England's guide on Covid-19 vaccination.

Track and Trace

If you are contacted through the NHS Track and Trace scheme, please do follow any and all guidance that you are given. We encourage everyone to download the NHS COVID-19 app to assist with the national contact tracing scheme.

If you need to self-isolate based on the guidance of Track and Trace, please do complete the forms above as appropriate in order to inform the University.

The University’s duty to provide Track and Trace support to NHS and other national bodies

The University is required to be in a position to provide contact tracing support to Public Health England, NHS or local authority bodies dealing with cases of Covid-19 within our community. As the University campus is large and to ensure comprehensive coverage the University is using data collected by our network of WiFi beacons.

  • As one of your devices connects to Eduroam your email address, date/time stamp and beacon ID is collected. This data is encrypted and held in a secure database which can only be accessed by two people, the Network Team Leader and the Senior Systems Specialist.
  • The data, to comply with other requirements including PREVENT, is held for 180 days but only accessed for specific purposes.
  • If a request or advice from PHE (or other relevant authority) is made the Health, Safety and Business Continuity Manager will require that the Track and Trace process is initiated.
  • The search looks at the location of the wireless logins for the period of 48 hours before symptoms were first recoded (the period of time someone can be contagious). It will extract the email addresses of all others who were also using that wireless beacon at the same time.

Information collected will be limited to user email addresses and times and dates connecting to the Eduroam network. It will only be used as part of the University’s efforts to tackle the spread of COVID-19 and will only be retained for as long as is necessary The University is collecting this data under the lawful basis of public task as defined under Article 6(1)(e) of the GDPR where processing is being carried out in the public interest. 

If you have any technical questions regarding how the system works, please contact Fiona Greig, Director of Library and IT Services Fiona.Greig@winchester.ac.uk.  If you have any questions regarding data compliance, please contact Stephen Dowell, Compliance Officer Stephen.Dowell@winchester.ac.uk.

Mental wellbeing

We know we are all living in extraordinary times and this can impact on our mental health and wellbeing in a variety of ways. Our Student Services team is here to support you with all aspects of your welfare and general wellbeing both on campus and online, including through individual appointments and a huge range of resources. You can see the support available and how to book an appointment on winchester.ac.uk/ask

Safety Measures on Campus

We are following the latest Public Health England and government guidelines and have put in place a wide range of safety measures across our campus including:

  • Socially-distanced seats and workstations across campus
  • Clear signage
  • Enhanced cleaning systems
  • One-way systems and plastic barriers in appropriate areas
  • Widespread hand sanitiser and cleaning stations
  • Blended learning to eliminate large gatherings
  • Introducing a Covid Campus Safety Team
  • Capacity assessments of each room and venue on campus to enable social distancing for students and staff
  • Face covering guidance, including the provision of face shields for teaching staff
  • Covid-19 training for all staff ahead of their return to campus working

Deans and Directors have been working directly with the Estates and Facilities team to plan the usage of each space on campus appropriately.

In September, students received a copy of 'Working together to keep campus and Winchester safe: Covid guidelines for students' and have received updated guidance as it has continued to change.

It is really important that all staff and students take all safety measures seriously. In order to protect us all, ignoring or refusing to follow government guidelines and regulations will result in disciplinary action, including potential suspension of studies for students.

We all need to:

  • Practise social distancing
  • Wear a face covering as appropriate 
  • Get regularly tested
  • Wash our hands regularly for 20 seconds using soap and water, or use hand sanitiser, and cover coughs and sneezes
  • Follow all government, NHS and University guidance and regulations. All University guidance is subject to change in line with the latest government advice. Visit https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus for the latest government advice.
  • Remember that socialising and having an fun and safe student experience is still important. Visit the Winchester Student Union events calendar and explore a range of extra-curricular opportunities
  • Follow the latest Government guidance on social gatherings

 

Travel and International Guidance

Travelling to campus

Anyone needing to travel to campus must follow the latest government guidance on travel when planning your transport to campus. If you can travel to campus on foot or bicycle, this is encouraged.

Arriving from a country with quarantine requirements

If you are arriving from a country with quarantine requirements and need to self-isolate, you need to ensure you follow all of the instructions of how to self-isolate.

If you are self-isolating you need to make us aware of your circumstances by emailing safety@winchester.ac.uk  You must ensure you self-isolate for the full quarantine period. Please keep your boarding pass or other evidence of your return to England so your return date can be established if needs be.

If you need any help or support while self-isolating, contact our Student Advice team on student.advice@winchester.ac.uk

Advice for International students who are unable to rearrange travel

International students who had already booked travel before the latest guidance was issued who are unable to rearrange travel (for any reason, including the cost of rearranging being too much), are welcome to return to Winchester as scheduled. Please do note the guidance to traveling on the Government website here

If you are an international student and have any concerns around your visa or immigration status, or would like support for issues like homesickness, please get in touch with our International Student Adviser on student.advice@winchester.ac.uk  

Our Community

Working together to protect Winchester

We are proud to support the NHS during the coronavirus pandemic. We provided campus accommodation this spring and summer to frontline staff who were unable to stay in their own homes and car parking spaces to those working at our neighbouring Royal Hampshire County Hospital.

We also donated acetate sheets to the Hospital which were used to make single-use face guards for HHFT staff. Read more about our support for the NHS here.

We are working closely with our community partners, including Winchester City Council and the Police the city to ensure that we have a coordinated approach to our students and staff following all public safety guidance, including social distancing.

We are in regular communication with our students and have outlined that ignoring or refusing to follow government guidelines and regulations will result in disciplinary action, including potential suspension from studies.

Public events are continuing to happen online and we would love for members of the community to attend.  Please keep an eye on the events page of our website for the latest events listings.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is there financial hardship support for students available?

We have a Student Support Fund which is available for full-time and part-time UK students experiencing exceptional, unforeseen hardship, including as a result of the global pandemic. For more information on our Student Support Fund, please contact Student Services on 01962 827341 or email​ student.advice@winchester.ac.uk

I'm a commuting student whose course is back on campus for some sessions. How often should I be getting tested?

If you are coming onto campus, you should be getting tested twice a week. If you are coming onto campus less than twice a week, you should be getting tested once a week. If you are not coming onto campus every week, you should be getting tested each time you are on campus.

I booked an on-campus Covid test but I didn't get any confirmation email. Has my test been booked?

Some students have reported not getting their confirmation emails when booking on-campus Covid tests. You booking will have gone through, but if you want to confirm or have any issues, please email testing@winchester.ac.uk 

I haven’t been receiving student emails, what can I do?

If you are a current or incoming student but haven’t been receiving emails from us, please double check your spam folder in the first instance.

If you can’t seem to find any emails from us, please contact our Registry team on Registry.Enquiries@winchester.ac.uk with your name and 7-digit student number so we can sort this for you.

Do you have a question not answered here?

Call the Covid Careline on 01962 827100.