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Inverness College UHI is limits access to campus this week and will temporarily move most teaching to remote delivery from Thursday, January 6, to Friday, January 14, in response to a sharp rise in cases of the Covid-19 Omicron variant

By Ian Duncan

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Inverness College UHI Campus.
Inverness College UHI Campus.

Inverness College UHI is moving to blended learning in line with a number of colleges across Scotland.

The UHI, which has a number of campuses across the region, is making the move in response to a sharp rise in cases of the Covid-19 Omicron variant.

A Inverness College UHI spokeswoman said: “We have taken the decision to minimise access to our campus this week, ahead of the Christmas break on Wednesday.

"A limited number of apprentices will attend campus as normal to complete practical work, but most classes scheduled have been switched to remote delivery.

“We have also informed staff and students of our intention to temporarily move most of our teaching to remote delivery from Thursday, January 6, to Friday, January 14, to give us time to respond to any further Scottish Government guidance over the festive break.

"There will be exceptions to this, where practical, on campus delivery is essential, with limited numbers returning to attend face-to-face classes, as planned.

“It is very much our intention that normal, planned delivery for all students will resume on Monday, January 17, unless there are further changes to Scottish Government guidance. The health and safety of our staff and students remains our top priority.”

Many of Scotland’s colleges have chosen to move to blended learning for the last week of term and are planning for hybrid learning when colleges return in January.

They are proactively planning to deliver hybrid teaching for the first two weeks of next year to protect students, minimise pressure on public transport and Scotland’s NHS, by helping to control the spread of the Covid-19 virus. These plans are subject to change, with colleges keeping in touch with their students throughout December and January.

Shona Struthers, the chief executive of Colleges Scotland, said: “Colleges have prepared very well for this model, and students can be assured that the quality of their college experience is being protected.

“Scottish Government and colleges across the country are working closely together as the situation changes. Colleges were already operating at a higher safety level than the rest of society through this autumn and winter, and we expect that to continue when learning and teaching resumes in January.

“Everyone over 18 in Scotland can now get 1st, 2nd and booster doses of the vaccine and getting a jag over the Christmas holidays will help us all get back to classes more quickly and safely in the new year. Students have also been able to access lateral flow tests at their college for many months, and I’d urge anyone attending a campus to test regularly.”

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