All Teagasc colleges to reopen fully in next fortnight
Teagasc is working towards reopening all of its colleges between now and mid-September in line with national guidelines.
Speaking to AgriLand, head of education with Teagasc, Tony Pettit, said: “Teagasc has reviewed the national reopening guidelines for schools and for further and higher education institutions [regarding] Covid-19 prevention.
Each college has been working in recent months on preparing for the September reopening of colleges.
“All colleges will fully reopen between now and mid-September.”
Teagasc campuses include Ballyhaise, Kildalton, Clonakilty and Botanic Gardens and the private agricultural colleges at Gurteen, Mountbellew and Pallaskenry also follow the same Teagasc curriculum.
Implementing new measures
Teagasc says a number of new measures are being taken to ensure the safety and well-being of both learners and staff.
Key measures include:
- Physical distancing of 2m;
- Wearing of face coverings;
- Provision of hand sanitisation facilities;
- Covid signage and pedestrian flows.
Tony Pettit also says a “blended learning” model will operate involving “a combination of face-to-face delivery on-site and remote delivery”.
The actual ratio of face to remote will vary by individual circumstances at colleges.
“Face-to-face delivery will primarily be focused on skills instruction activities and practical elements of courses.”
Teagasc says online assessments instead of written examinations will be used to a greater extent.
Student placement period schedules will operate to their normal schedules for the 2020/21 academic year.
“These arrangements are based on current Covid-19 guidelines and restrictions, and may have to change in the event that tighter restrictions prevail. In this event there will be a greater reliance on remote delivery,” says Pettit.