Education Partnership North East continued to deliver interviews for all funded college provision including school leavers, adults applying for further education programme and higher education programmes.
Recognising the importance of detailed advice and guidance of prospective students, and to complement the college’s approach to Virtual Open Event delivery, curriculum teams have been delivering interviews for prospective students on the phone following the national COVID-19 response.
As a key part of the application journey Education Partnership North East wanted to ensure that students had the opportunity to speak to their teaching staff before starting and a need for teams to understand what support prospective students may need when they arrive. All critical parts of the process of ensuring the right student is on the right course.
In the weeks approaching the lockdown by government the group recognized that attendance at interviews was reducing, to 52% from a normal year to date average of 66%. Families and students began isolation so protocols, and were making less trips out of the house, clearly identifying the need to adjust our normal practice for face-to-face interviews.
As part of the protocol developed a digital solution to the recording of interviews via the MIS system was implemented and helped reduce the burden of manually processing when the college recognized absence from work or remote working could impact on staffing levels. Students were also communicated with via text message in advance of their interview slot to discuss the new process. Automated referrals for learning support and extra curriculum activities such as the Sports Development Centres were also implemented.
In Creative subjects where the offer may be based partly on an auditions or demonstration of a portfolio, those students were invited to submit these digitally or as a video improving the reliability of the offer process.
First full week of telephone interviews (3-8 April)
Hartlepool Sixth Form
Feedback surveys were issued to students and overall experience was down across each college.
The results of the feedback in week one is being analysed to create improvements in experience.
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