COVID-19 SUPPORT

Covid-19 Support Services

Quarantine

The UK Government is requiring quarantine for travellers arriving to the country from overseas. Some countries may be exempt, some require quarantine in a hotel, and some can quarantine at home. For children coming to study in school there is the option for them to quarantine in their boarding house, if school are offering this as an option; for those who are travelling alone and who cannot quarantine at their school they have the option to quarantine in provision organised by their guardianship organisation, or with relatives, in the UK.

Oxford Guardians have homestays that are willing to take students for their quarantine period, and we will provide guidance to the homestays, students and parents on how this will be accomplished in each individual home ahead of the student’s departure to the UK. For more generic advice please see our Pandemic Policy.

Please note, although we try to keep updated with the quarantine requirements for every country that our students return from, you should also check all entry requirements. More information on this can be found at the following sites:

Travel Corridors: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-travel-corridors#contents

Red List Countries: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/transport-measures-to-protect-the-uk-from-variant-strains-of-covid-19#travel-bans-to-the-uk—banned-countries

Guidance on Quarantine When You Arrive in England: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/how-to-quarantine-when-you-arrive-in-england

Quarantining in a Quarantine Hotel: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/booking-and-staying-in-a-quarantine-hotel-when-you-arrive-in-england

Transport

Travel of any kind in the current pandemic is an extremely anxious time. Oxford Guardians are blessed to have been working with a number of transport companies for many years who have all risen to the challenges presented by Covid-19 and continue to deliver the same excellent service in a covid secure way.

As well as adhering to all safety guidance laid out by the government, our drivers also go the extra mile when transporting our students to the airport and will not leave until the flight has departed and the student is safely on their way. In the event of any issues arising they will contact our emergency line to discuss the best course of action and will return the student to a homestay if necessary if the flight is cancelled or cannot be boarded for some reason.

If a student is travelling to one of our homestays we insist on transport being booked either by ourselves or by school, for the safety of the student and the homestay and to minimise the risk of infection on the journey. Some schools will insist the student use their transport when arriving to campus, others will allow us to book this. Under no circumstances do we suggest that our students should take public transport during the current circumstances.

Testing

There are currently several reasons for requiring testing under the pandemic. Below is a brief outline of how Oxford Guardians can help with organising the different types of tests, as well as links to more specific guidance for each where appropriate.

Test to Arrive in the UK: Everyone is now required to provide proof of a negative Covid-19 test that was taken within 3 days of the service on which you will arrive in England departs. We recommend the test you organise is a PCR test, however more details on what exactly is required can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-testing-for-people-travelling-to-england

Travel Testing Package:Everyone is now required to book this test package if you are due to arrive in the UK. This includes two tests: one to be taken on day 2 of your quarantine, and one to be taken on or after day 8. More details and booking details can be found here: https://quarantinehotelbookings.ctmportal.co.uk/

Oxford Guardians can offer advice, however this needs to be booked by yourself along with completing the passenger locator form before your arrival: https://www.gov.uk/provide-journey-contact-details-before-travel-uk

Test to Release Scheme: This is a voluntary scheme to help you leave your quarantine early. This will need to be done in addition to the travel testing package and you cannot end quarantine early until you have had a negative result from the test to release scheme. Full details can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-test-to-release-for-international-travel

If you would like to discuss this as a possibility do speak to one of the central team.

Test to Travel: For those students who wish to return home for term breaks, etc., we are more than willing to help organise a test to enable them to travel. Please do make sure you tell us what is required for the test to return to your country, as this can often change. We have worked with a number of labs to provide tests in good time for travel and can recommend some places if the student’s school are not able to organise this.

Guardianship Under Covid-19

The pandemic has caused the majority of our day-to-day lives to change, and many of the activities we did before have been curtailed. This, in relation to the guardianship we offer, has particularly impacted on our ability to visit the students under our care at school; many schools are not allowing visitors on site, or only in very restrictive circumstances, and the visits are a key feature of our guardianship offer.

Oxford Guardians reacted quickly to this change in circumstances and we adapted our guardianship offer so that we can still offer the same level of care and attention to our students as we have always done. In place of visits through the term our guardians will endeavour to have video calls each week with their students, and increase their communications with the staff in the school to ensure that any problems or changes, no matter how small, with regards to their studies or emotional wellbeing is picked up as quickly as possible. We will also attend virtual parents’ evenings on behalf of our parents and will provide comprehensive reports on the teachers’ comments that can be passed on.

We work with our partner schools to discover which schools are able to continue to house students over term breaks and, where this is not possible or the preference is for the student to be housed elsewhere, we will place the student with one of our warm and welcoming homestays for the duration of the break.

Working with our sister company, Oxford Education Online, we are also able to offer bespoke tutoring to students over term breaks if this is requested to ensure that their studies do not suffer from the extended time of remote learning.

As soon as restrictions are lifted and our guardians are able to resume our regular guardianship the change from ‘remote’ to ‘face-to-face’ guardianship will be communicated to parents.