Information for Universities
Information for university and college admissions teams (2021 admissions cycle)
School closures and online provision
Upton Hall School closed from 20 March 2020 as directed by the government in their response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Students’ lessons were provided through Google Classroom and, where necessary, paper-based resources were provided to ensure, as far as possible, equal access to all students.
The majority of our students engaged well with online learning and over 90% of Year 12 returned to limited face-to-face lessons when schools were permitted to re-open to Year 12 on 15 June. Given the government restrictions surrounding student numbers permitted in schools in June, Year 12 students received 2 hours’ face-to-face lesson per subject per week for 4 weeks between 15 June and 13 July.
Our tight-knit FCJ school community was particularly affected by the hospitalisation of one of our Deputy Headteachers who is held in very high esteem by both colleagues and students alike. As one of the most serious cases of a ‘survivor’ nationally, the impact of his prolonged hospitalisation and recovery had significant emotional and day-to-day implications.
As a school serving students from a range of socioeconomic backgrounds, students’ households have undoubtedly been affected by the economic impact of the lockdown and subsequent recession.
As part of the ‘Track and Trace’ regulations regarding self-isolation, our students are experiencing continued disruption to their face-to-face lessons; for every positive case in school, close contacts have to isolate at home for 14 days. As of Autumn 2020 the Wirral has been identified as a high risk area, as a result of the high level cases in the Liverpool City Region. Students will receive online lesson material when they are isolating.
All Year 12 students had their work experience placements cancelled, which was scheduled to take place week commencing 8 June in the school calendar. All students had secured relevant work experience to support their university applications and, as such, are at a significant disadvantage when compared to previous cohorts of students. This includes but is not an exhaustive list:
- Primary school placements for teaching applicants
- Hospital and GP placements for Medicine applicants
- Veterinary placements, such as small animal practices, farm placements and equine placements were cancelled.
- ‘Shadowing’ placements for other healthcare applicants, including Nursing and Midwifery applicants.
Many students had also arranged work experience placements for the Easter holidays to give them a longer insight into particular professions; these were also cancelled.
Medicine 2021 applicants
Unfortunately, all of our 2021 Medicine applicants who had already completed paperwork for a week’s work experience in a clinical setting at Arrowe Park Hospital as part of a dedicated ‘Intromed’ programme, had their placements cancelled.
Unlike in previous years, students also experienced the complete shutdown of face-to-face experience relating to their applications, such as voluntary work, work with specific groups within society and the Duke of Edinburgh’s expeditions.
Our usual Futures Week university preparation, including the UCAS HE Convention was cancelled and students were provided with university assistance online via Google Classroom. This was far less interactive than the planned face-to-face sessions planned to span two full days, although live sessions, recorded presentations and some virtual contributions from universities were used.