News July 6, 2020 by St Giles

Re-opening St Giles

Covid-19 has been impactful, to say the least, and has sent many businesses worldwide to a grinding halt. Our St Giles schools were no exception and although in 65 years of business, this is the first time we’ve closed our doors on this scale, we were more than happy to play our part in stopping the spread of this devastating, global pandemic.

4 months on and we’re delighted to confirm that we’re re-opening our doors on 13th July and welcoming students to practice English with us. Despite this, re-opening was not an easy decision and the well-being of our students remains our top priority. The key questions that arose were:

-How are we going to keep students safe?

-How do we keep students updated on the regular changes to in country Covid-19 guidelines?

-How do we provide students with a fantastic social experience with additional safety measures in place?

After careful planning and consideration, we have answered these questions below:

How are we going to keep students safe?

This is our top priority and as such we will be putting a number of health and safety measures in place which will be regularly updated in line with government guidelines. The schools will be cleaned more frequently with a particular focus on high contact surfaces. We will also manage movement around school with careful timetabling and floor markings which will show safe distancing from peers. On a more personal level, hand sanitiser will be readily available and face coverings will be recommended on the journey to school (these are a requirement on public transport) and in common areas. You can find out more about our plans to keep students safe here.

How do we keep students updated on the regular changes to in country Covid-19 guidelines?

We will be following government guidelines closely and keeping in regular contact with students due to start studying with us to update them on in country measures, such as masks on public transport and any changes to quarantine measures in place. For students in country, notice boards in the school will be updated frequently and they will receive regular emails from the school to provide them with updates to government Covid-19 strategy.  Most of our schools have TV’s which display the news and will focus on key Covid-19 updates.

How do we provide students with a fantastic social experience with additional safety measures in place?

We pride ourselves on a fun and varied social programme, but with many activities closed under government guidelines, we questioned how we could deliver the social aspect of our course to the same high standard. However, upon re-opening, we have decided to combine our online social programme, including yoga, cooking classes, zumba etc. with a slightly adapted physical programme including walking tours with social distancing in place, picnics in the parks (weather permitting) and museum/gallery visits, as these are due to re-open on the 6th July. The focus will be on outdoor activities and the majority of our schools have beautiful outside spaces to facilitate on site activities too. Online activities will be over Zoom and in the comfort and safety of students’ homes.

At St Giles, our focus will always be on the well-being of our students and from the 13th July, we will be ready to greet them with a warm welcome and a plan in place to ensure they will have an amazing experience, whilst staying safe and well. We look forward to opening again and welcome any questions you may have: hq@stgiles.co.uk