Two students walking with their back to the camera underneath a tree in Hannington Quad

Michaelmas term 2021

This page provides information about how College life in Michaelmas 2021 will be affected by arrangements to keep students and staff safe in the context of Covid-19. 

Page last updated 14 October 2021

If you think you might have covid-19, please read the guidance here. You can see a summary of the College covid-related protocols for MT21 here

Returning to Oxford

Undergraduate freshers are expected to arrive by Sunday 3 October. Returning undergraduates should be back in Oxford by 5pm on Wednesday 6 October. Any students moving into college accommodation who wish to arrive earlier than Sunday 3 October must contact the Accommodation Manager (accommodation@spc.ox.ac.uk).

Any students concerned that they may not be able to travel to Oxford in time for the start of Michaelmas term should contact the College Office (college.office@spc.ox.ac.uk) as soon as possible.

If you are arriving from outside the UK, you should follow all testing and quarantine advice from the UK Government, and in your home country, carefully. Further information can be found on the University website (see the section titled ‘Travel and visas’). Students from ‘amber list’ countries can quarantine in college accommodation (if they have been allocated a room in college accommodation for 2021-22) whereas those from ‘red list’ countries cannot. The College is not able to provide financial support towards the quarantine costs for students coming from ‘red list’ countries. Any student needing to quarantine in college accommodation should contact accommodation@spc.ox.ac.uk as soon as possible to confirm their arrangements.

If you live in the UK, you should take a lateral flow device (LFD) test before you travel to Oxford. You can order tests free online or collect them from your local pharmacy. If you test positive, you must self-isolate at home and take a confirmatory PCR test. If the PCR test is positive you must continue to self-isolate and not travel to Oxford until you have completed your self-isolation. If either the LFD or the confirmatory PCR test at home is negative, you can travel to Oxford. Any family members or supporters assisting students in moving into College accommodation should also take an LFD test before coming to College.

Students should then take two more LFD tests when you arrive in Oxford. The first should be on the day you arrive and the second three days later. You can collect these tests from the Porters’ Lodge.

Contact details 

It is important to keep your personal details up-to-date on Student Self-Service. As part of the required re-enrolment process for Y2+ students, please check that your term-time address, mobile phone number and emergency contact details are correct in Student Self-Service.

Vaccination

All students and staff are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated against Covid-19 if they have not already done so. The more students and staff are fully vaccinated, the safer our whole community will be and the less disruption there will be to college and University activities. Further information about getting vaccinated, including via temporary vaccination centres in Oxford can be found on the University website (see the section titled ‘Health and Vaccination’).

LFD testing

All students and staff are strongly encouraged to take part in symptom-free testing twice a week. This is an important way of helping to keep everyone COVID-safe, and ensuring that we don’t have to reintroduce further restrictions on college life this term.

Students and staff are able to pick up boxes of seven Lateral Flow Device (LFD) tests (free) from the Lodge, as part of the University’s ‘LFD Collect’ scheme.

By picking up a set of seven tests from the LFD Collect service, you are agreeing to use all of the tests yourself and also to report all your results (negative, positive or void) to both the Early Alert Service (EAS) and the NHS – every time you take an LFD test, as soon as possible after you get the result. You will also receive a personalised ‘quick reporting link’ from the EAS via email and SMS, which enables you to report your result to the University without logging in with your SSO.

We appreciate that reporting twice will take more time – but the University does not receive results from the NHS, and the information is needed to contain outbreaks. The EAS results reporting form is very simple and quick to complete.

We ask that you please report all your self-testing LFD results (regardless of whether you obtained the LFD tests via LFD Collect or not) to both the EAS and the NHS.

College face coverings policy

Students are expected to carry a face covering at all times and use this as requested by College staff (unless you are exempt). Disposable and reusable face coverings are available from the Porters’ Lodge. Staff (unless exempt) are asked to carry a face covering at all times so that they can wear it not only whenever they themselves choose to do so but also at any time if requested by others (either staff or students) with whom they are sharing enclosed spaces.  

The use of face coverings is encouraged in larger gatherings.

Face coverings must be worn on entry to Hannington Hall and whilst queuing for the servery and finding a seat. Face coverings should also be worn while exiting the Hall. 

Face coverings should be worn in the Chapel. 

Teaching and Learning

You can find information about the University’s overall approach to teaching and learning in the context of Covid-19 hereThe University is planning to provide most teaching in-person in the new academic year. This will be enhanced by high-quality online resources and, in some cases, online teaching. Face coverings will be required for in-person teaching of larger groups (unless you are exempt).

The College’s default position is that teaching will take place in-person but individual tutors will make their own choices about the mode of teaching that they employ. Tutors will be clear with students at the start of term about their plans for teaching in-person or online while acknowledging that these plans may need to change, and rapidly, as term progresses.

While the default position is that tutors and students are not required to wear face coverings during tutorials or College classes, any individual present in a teaching session (tutor or student) may request that face coverings are worn. If a request is made for face covering to be worn, then all present are expected to wear them (except those exempt from doing so).

Week 0 Collections 

Continuing undergraduate students who did not have University examinations last term may have Collections on Thursday and/or Friday of week 0 (4 and 5 October). These will be conducted remotely (papers released via the intranet) but you should ensure you know whether to do them in closed-book or open-book format. 

College Library

The College Library is open to all students to access the collections and to use as a location for quiet study. 

Other important notes:
•    You are advised to wear a face covering while in the Library.
•    The chairs should not be moved, and you are asked to wipe down hard surfaces when you arrive and when you leave.
•    Your belongings should not be left in the Library.
•    If someone needs to access the books on shelves near where you are sitting, you’ll need to vacate your seat briefly and make space for them to get the books they need.

More information about the Library is available on the main Library webpage.

In addition to the seats in the Library which are available 24/7, quiet study space will also be available in the Latner and Warriner Rooms every evening from the start of week 1 of Michaelmas term. There is no pre-booking system for study spaces currently in operation. 

Eating arrangements: Dining Hall

College dining is available throughout the term but numbers are limited in the Hall.

From the start of Michaelmas term, the following meal times will apply (although there may be some alterations during Freshers' Week):

Breakfast 8am – 9am Monday to Friday (continental breakfast every day except full English breakfast on Wednesdays)
Lunch 12noon – 2pm Monday to Friday
Weekend Brunch 11am – 1pm Saturday and Sunday
Dinner 

Informal Hall 5.30pm – 7.30pm Monday / Wednesday / Friday

Informal Hall 5.30pm – 6.30pm Tuesday / Thursday / Saturday

Informal Hall 6pm – 7.30pm Sunday

Take-away is available at all mealtimes. 

Key points to note: 

  • Hand sanitiser stations remain in place and should be used prior to entering the Hall. 
  • You must wear a face covering on the stairs and on the way through the servery. Only remove your face covering when you are seated in the Hall with your food. 
  • You must follow the one-way system and comply with direction from the Hall staff about where to sit.
  • For those who have not pre paid, payment is cashless at the till using Upay.

Formal Halls will take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays during Full term.

The JCR, MCR and the Bar

The JCR and MCR will both be open 24 hours a day from the start of October.

We currently anticipate that the Bar will open as normal, in accordance with the Student Regulations, but this will be confirmed nearer the start of term.

Visitors to the College

Visitors and guests are now allowed into College. Students should ensure they are familiar with the requirements about guests set out in the Student Regulations.

Welfare

The College’s Welfare team is available to support students.

The University’s Student Welfare and Support Services (SWSS) provides a range of specialist welfare services to all students at the University. This includes counselling (one-to-one and group sessions), support for disabled students, support for students who have experienced sexual violence, and mediation. Provision is currently available to all students online (by video, chat or email) and by telephone.

Living arrangements

The College is not currently allocating students into household groups however this system will be introduced if required.

Cleaning arrangements

Scouts clean student bedrooms once a week.  

Students are asked to place their bin outside their door when they want their rubbish removed. Scouts will continue to clean shared facilities. 

Students are expected to use the cleaning materials which have been left in the corridors and shared facilities specifically for their use whenever necessary. 

Eating arrangements: Kitchens

The JCR Kitchen and MCR Kitchens will be available for use 24 hours a day. They will be cleaned daily by the Scouts. Each user must also hand sanitise before entry and thoroughly wipe down all areas used with the cleaning materials provided. 

In all kitchens, including the JCR and MCR Kitchens, the Scouts do not wash up crockery or cooking implements; this remains your responsibility. You must wash up items used to prepare each meal immediately after use and not leave dirty items in the kitchen. Scouts may remove dirty items from kitchens if left unattended. 

Support for those who need to self-isolate

Those quarantining after arriving from abroad will be provided with detailed instructions by email.

If you have covid-19 symptoms, you should follow the guidance about self-isolating and booking a test via the Early Alert Service (EAS)

Contact the Lodge immediately to report that you are self-isolating and email covid@spc.ox.ac.uk.

Please ensure you have 48 hours worth of food supplies in your room in case you need to self-isolate.