A BASINGSTOKE college will not be holding face-to-face tutorials for students next month as it will "disrupt their learning quite significantly".

Ali Foss, the principal of Queen Mary's College, confirmed to the Gazette that tutorials will instead start in July, adding that there was "no real benefit" to students' education for them to bring around 1,000 Year 12s back to the college in two weeks time.

Instead, remote learning, which has been up and running since the start of the coronavirus outbreak and is working well, will continue after the end of the half term break.

As previously reported, the government has announced that some school pupils will be returning on June 1 as lockdown measures are eased.

Pupils in reception, Year 1 and Year 6 will return fully, whilst education providers have been asked to invite those in Years 10 and 12 back to school, sixth form or college for "some face-to-face tutorials". The government say this is to aid them as they prepare for exams next summer having had the disruption of this Spring.

However, Ms Foss says that remote teaching will continue for most, whilst the "most vulnerable learners" will be brought back to college.

She added that work was ongoing to ensure that social distancing could be observed on site, and that this would take time to implement.

It includes setting up one-way systems around the campus, protection for staff and students, and staggering the start and end of the day.

However, one of the major stumbling blocks was the proportion of students who get to the site by public transport, which is being discouraged by the government.

"Given the numbers that we have and restrictions on travel, we felt that in order to make that work, we would have to disrupt their learning quite significantly.

"The practicalities of it in the short term, we could see no real benefits. That is in keeping with government guidance."

Ms Foss said that she was "really pleased" with how their remote learning has proceeded since they made the switch in March, and that attendance has been "really high".

"It would be far more disruptive to bring them back," she continued.

Meanwhile, there is also focus on what education may look like in September. QMC are currently planning for a mix of remote and on site teaching, saying that induction day will look very different.

"We have sent the applicants some material to prepare them for college," Ms Foss continued. "We are preparing a remote open evening. They haven’t had remote learning before in many cases.

"I am writing to parents and students every week and we will work with everybody individually.

"There will be students in households who are shielding. If our students couldn’t attend for any reason, we will work with them as much as we can.

"We are really proud in terms of what we have managed to do.