Last reviewed: 25 January 2021

Due to the circumstances surrounding COVID-19, we realise that this is a difficult time for everyone and the health and wellbeing of our students is extremely important to us.

However, it’s really important that students continue to work hard so they can progress to the next level of study, university or employment. We've put together some answers to some FAQs surrounding COVID-19 and your child’s education.

What is the College's response to the COVID-19 pandemic?

We have created a dedicated Coronavirus (COVID-19) section of the website here, which we regularly update with the latest information.
Does the College monitor progress and attendance?

We expect each student to aim for 100% attendance next year, so we would appreciate your support in ensuring that your son/daughter does not miss any of their timetabled lessons, including those online. Full attendance will ensure good progress which will be illustrated in the reviews your child receives each half term. These are on a BRAG profile:

  • Blue – working above targets
  • Red – working well below targets
  • Amber – working below targets
  • Green- working at targets

Students that attend college consistently are far more likely to be making expected progress and succeed in their chosen course.

What is blended learning?

It seems highly likely that there will be a requirement for some form of social distancing for some time to come, so we’ve developed a blended learning model that combines a mixture of face to face (college attendance for classes) and online lessons (from home). This has been done to reduce the number of people in college at any one time.

Online lessons are clearly indicated on timetables which are available on ProPortal.

Interactive lessons are delivered using a variety of digital platforms, and we have brought together a wide-range of online resources to help you learn at home.

The blended model is designed to be flexible and we have addressed the balance of face-to-face activity for certain groups who are more comfortable with a classroom or lecture-based model.

We are continually reviewing the balance of our blended learning on a weekly basis in the context of the local, regional and national picture to ensure the safety of our college community.

We recognise that our plans may need to be revised if government advice changes and will continue to communicate any updates to staff and students.

What happens when the College has to close due to lockdown?

In the event of college closure due to national lockdown measures, students should switch to learning online, from home.

Please click here to learn more about our remote education offer.

What is Century Tech?

The College has invested in specialist software called Century Tech to assist with remote learning and independent study.

The software helps teachers to monitor progress and identify knowledge gaps so that they can adapt lessons and feedback accordingly.

Maths and English GCSE students have 1.5 hours of timetabled study to complete each week using Century Tech.

Please remember that the work your son/daughter does on Century Tech is extremely important and may be used to evidence their progress if we are asked to provide calculated grades again this year.

If your son/daughter has any problems with completing the work please make sure they inform their maths and/or English teacher straight away.

Why does my son/daughter need to have their camera on during online lessons?

We expect all students to have their camera on for the duration of their online lessons. This is to help our teachers see whether or not they’re actively participating and engaged in the session.

We are aware that some students may not want to show their home environment on camera. If that’s the case, please ask them to choose a virtual background instead.

We don't have internet access at home - can the College help?

If internet access is a problem, we may be able to help. Please get in touch with our Student Services team to discuss your situation.
Does my son/daughter need their own laptop for online lessons?

Students must have the appropriate equipment for all online lessons, and we would appreciate your help in ensuring this. This includes a laptop or equivalent device, webcam, microphone and access to the internet. Please contact Student Services if your son or daughter needs support with anything.

Please encourage your son/daughter to create a quiet study space at home so that they aren’t interrupted by noise or other family members for the duration of their online lesson. If this is not possible, please talk to us about our quiet study spaces which have been designed to help students access lessons remotely. These lessons are intended to replicate the classroom environment so we expect students to the respect the same rules apply e.g. no eating, no hoods or hats etc.

Will exams and assessments go-ahead in 2021?

Please be aware that all exams and assessments due to take place this summer have been cancelled by the Government.

It is anticipated that exams will be replaced with college-based assessments, and final grades will be decided between the College and the exam boards.

Ofqual and the Department for Education are jointly consulting on arrangements for awarding grades for GCSEs this summer and on awarding arrangements for a range of vocational and technical qualifications.

We expect an announcement within the next few weeks confirming the final arrangements for grading, and will communicate this information to students as soon as we can.

Why does my son/daughter need to wear a face covering during lessons?

All students attending college in person must abide by our COVID code of conduct which includes wearing a 2-ply face covering in our buildings, respecting all social distancing rules and interacting with others in a safe and appropriate way. This is to ensure that all members of the College community are kept safe.

COVID-19 case numbers at Northampton College remain low because of the clear safety steps we have taken and the responsible behaviour of our community. Please help us to safeguard the safety and well-being of our college community by reinforcing these important messages at home.

For those with an existing medical condition which gives them an exemption from wearing a face covering, we offer gold lanyards that students can wear to indicate this. If you feel as though your son/daughter is entitled to a gold lanyard, please provide medical evidence to our Student Services team.

Why does my son/daughter have to socially distance when they're in a 'bubble'?

No stone has been left unturned in our mission to make our students safe and we are confident we now have a ‘best in class’ solution that will provide reassurance for students, parents and staff alike.

We have implemented a series of measures which exceed the official guidance including social distancing of 2m in classroom bubbles.

Why can't my son/daughter leave the campus at lunchtime?

Students should remain on the campus they study at during the day, except for the purposes of travelling to and from college at the beginning and end of the day. This is to respect the communities around the College campuses many of whom fall into the highly vulnerable category.

Your son/daughter should only attend College only for the purposes of attending lessons or accessing study space. Being on campus purely for social purposes is not allowed.
{/qaccordion|I'm worried about my son/daughter's mental health and welleing - does the college offer support?}
Everyone needs a little support from time to time and the ongoing COVID-19 crisis has left many of our students feeling increasingly anxious and stressed as they try to make sense of the situation and manage everyday life.

Our expert team is on hand to help young people overcome any issues that may be affecting their time in college whether they are personal or linked to their college work.

We offer students one to one sessions, where they can discuss any problems with a mentor. We’ll help them find ways to overcome any barriers so they can do their best in college.

Have a chat to the Student Services team on 01604 734049 or 01604 734333, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to find out more.

Who should I contact if my son/daughter is displaying COVID-19 symptoms?

As a reminder, if you have any of the following symptoms you must stay at home (self-isolate for 14 days) and get a test. The main coronavirus symptoms are: a new continuous cough; a high temperature, and/or a loss or change to sense of smell or taste.

If someone in your household has developed COVID-19 symptoms or tested positive for COVID-19 or they have been in contact with someone who has developed COVID-19 symptoms or tested positive for COVID-19, they must self-isolate for 14 days.

Only get a test if you have coronavirus symptoms or have been asked to get tested. Students will only be allowed back on college premises after they have self-isolated for 14 days, or after confirmation of a negative test result.

Please contact Student Services if you need to self-isolate or have any queries.


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