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Reception area at Griffith College Dublin

Returning on campus

We would like to reassure our staff, learners, residents and visitors that we are taking all the steps we possibly can to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus and we are committed to providing a safe and healthy environment.

We are maintaining the highest possible standards of cleanliness, in line with the advice and guidelines from the Health Service Executive (HSE). We are monitoring the situation daily and we are following official recommendations for the protection of everyone on campus.

A few key points to be noted are:

  • The wearing of face masks is mandatory inside all campus buildings, except in single-occupant rooms, when seated at a desk with more than 2 metres social distancing or within the campus restaurant while eating.
  • Physical distancing of 2 metres should continue to be observed in general communal areas, in addition to the wearing of masks.
  • Staff, learners, residents and visitors should wash their hands regularly and use the hand sanitisers available at the entry and exit of all buildings.
  • Cleaning schedules are in place for all high touch points.
  • Circulation signage is in place in many areas to include one-way and walk on left systems.
  • Our libraries, student services and restaurant will continue to operate, although capacities are significantly reduced
  • We recommend that all staff and students download and use the Ireland COVID-19 Tracker app available on the Apple App Store or Google Play.
  • Do not present on campus if you are feeling unwell or displaying any COVID-19 symptoms.

We want to work together, and we do expect everyone to exercise a high level of self-responsibility.

We understand that the COVID-19 regulations are continuously changing, and so is the advice from the Government. We will have clear communication primarily by email and via posters, to both our learners and staff, regarding Griffith College’s COVID-19 policy.

You are encouraged to provide us with feedback and suggestions which, in addition to any questions you may have, can be directed by email to [email protected].

For relevant information from other parts of the college, please see the links below.

Remote Working

Our IT team have created a dedicated section for information on Remote Working for staff. Please follow the information provided there to get started. It contains information and guides for using your own devices as well as college-owned devices and how to request support if required.

Wellness Supports

The college has several supports available for your physical and mental wellbeing.

FAQs about our campuses
Is the College open?

The College’s four campus locations are open to all. You are encouraged to email your faculty or Programme Director with any queries – contact details available by clicking here; alternately you can email or call the College for further details:

  • South Circular Road: 00353 - 1 - 4150400
  • City Centre (Wolfe Tone Street): 00353 - 1 - 4150450
  • Cork Campus: 00353 -21 - 4507027
  • Limerick Campus: 00353 - 61 - 310031
Is on-campus reception open?

Yes, you are most welcome to come to any of our campus receptions who can re-direct any queries you may have to the appropriate person.

 

Is the Students' Union open?

It is open, and you are most welcome to visit, just let them know a time and date and they’ll make an appointment for you. In addition, our Students’ Union is planning for the upcoming academic year to ensure the learner experience outside of the classroom is safe, fun and engaging.  

 

Is the fitness room at Dublin Main Campus open?

Currently, the fitness room is not open for health and safety reasons. This will be kept under constant review. We do aim to have the fitness room open in semester one.

 

Is Griffith Halls of Residence open?

The Griffith Halls of Residence is open and has been home to residents throughout the year. Limited availability remains for the upcoming academic year and further details can be found online

The Griffith Halls of Residence has been redesigned to meet all the HSE COVID-19 requirements. All residents and staff walking in the common areas as required to wear face masks at all times.

Further details on COVID-19 FAQ are available online.

Is the International Office open?

The International Office team are available to provide support and guidance to our incoming and returning EU and Non-EU learners. They can be contacted on [email protected].

 

Is the on-campus restaurant open?

The on-campus restaurant is preparing for the coming academic year and will implement new health and safety protocols along with tasty and appropriate meal options. The on-campus restaurant will be re-opening on Monday 5th of October and will operate in accordance with prevailing healthy and safety guidelines.

 

Are campus libraries open?

The library team are available on our campuses to support new and returning learners with their learning needs. They can be contacted on [email protected] and are happy to provide any assistance they can to support your learning.

 

What happens if a staff member/learner displays symptoms of COVID-19 while at College?

The following are the procedures to be implemented (which has been approved by our HSE contact person):

  1. The individual who is displaying symptoms should immediately be directed to go home, call their doctor and continue self-isolation at home. They should exit the College in a safe way.
  2. If they cannot go home immediately, the person who is unwell or has any COVID-19 symptoms should isolate.
  3. Each Programme Director has a procedure in place to accompany the individual to the designated isolation rooms (one in D009 and one in GHR) while also keeping at least two metres away from the symptomatic person and making sure that others maintain a distance of at least two metres from the symptomatic person at all times.
  4. In the isolation area, the persons should be two metres away from others in the room and have the windows open for ventilation.
  5. Both the staff member caring for a learner/lecturer/staff member should wear a face covering or mask and they should stay two metres apart at all times while in the isolation room, in common areas and while exiting the premises.
  6. Once the patient is in the isolation room, if they are not in medical distress, the carer should not remain in the room. A digital communication channel should be established – we do not want to increase the risk of transmission.
  7. Facilitate the person presenting with symptoms remaining in isolation if they cannot immediately go home and facilitate them calling their doctor. The individual should avoid touching people, surfaces and objects. Advice should be given to the person presenting with symptoms to cover their mouth and nose with the disposable tissue provided when they cough or sneeze and put the tissue in the waste bag provided.
  8. If the person is well enough to go home, arrange for them to be transported home themselves, as soon as possible and advise them to inform their general practitioner by phone of their symptoms. Public transport of any kind should not be used. Record checked of all persons who had close contact.
  9. If they are too unwell to go home or advice is required, contact 999 or 112 and inform them that the sick person has a suspected case of COVID-19.
  10. Carry out an assessment of the incident which will form part of determining follow-up actions and recovery.
  11. Arrange for appropriate cleaning of the isolation area and work areas involved.

The HSE will inform any staff/learners who have come into close contact with a diagnosed case via the contact tracing process. The HSE will contact all relevant persons where a diagnosis of COVID-19 is made. The instructions of the HSE should be followed and staff and learner confidentiality is essential at all times.

How will Griffith College deal with a COVID-19 outbreak on campus?

The College has developed a robust Business Continuity Planning strategy which encompasses advice from the HSE.

In all situations, a member of the RGC will contact the relevant HSE link below and the HSE will carry out a risk assessment to determine appropriate action.

Our Dublin HSE contact is:

  • Dr Helena Murray
  • Department of Public Health East, Room G29, Ground Floor; Dr. Steevens’ Hospital, Dublin 8.
    • Tel: 01-6352145
    • Fax: 01 6201785 

Our Cork HSE contact is

  • HSE South - Medical Officer of Health
  • Department of Public Health, Floor 2, Block 8, St Finbarr’s Hospital, Douglas Road, Cork.
    • Phone: 021 4927601
    • Fax: 021 4923257

Our Limerick HSE contact is:

  • HSE Mid West - Medical Officer of Health
  • Department of Public Health, Mount Kennett House, Henry Street, Limerick.
    • Phone: 061 483337
    • Fax: 061 464205
In class and lecturing FAQs
When can part-time lecturers return on campus?

All part-time lecturers will be notified by their Programme Director when they should present on campus in advance of lectures beginning.

 

Is it College policy for lecturers to attend on campus for lectures in Semester One?

Yes, this is correct. Griffith College will be delivering a hybrid model that incorporates face-to-face teaching in Semester One. 

All lectures will be delivered on campus as in previous years. Each faculty is working to ensure all on-campus delivery is compliant with public health advice. 

Staff and lecturers are invited to contact the Lead Worker Representative group at [email protected] if they have any questions regarding the College’s preparedness for face-to-face delivery. 

Will lecturers be required to wear PPE while teaching?

Lecturers will not be required to wear a facemask while teaching when 2 meter social distancing is possible. Lecturers may elect to wear a visor/face-shield in these situations, but there is no requirement to do so.

Where two-meter social distancing cannot be maintained, e.g. lab and studio work, both lectures and learners will be required to wear face masks at all times. At this time, the use of gloves by the wider College community is not considered necessary.

As all rooms will be set up to comply with social distancing we do not at this time require Perspex screens at lecture podiums. 

Please note that:

  • Each department/faculty will have a stock of face masks for all staff
  • We do ask that all staff to wear face masks while indoor in the College, so lecturers will use their normal/own facemask when entering the campus, but we will supply two re-usable ones to all lectures too at the beginning of teaching term.
  •  Visors/face-shields can be supplied by the faculty if required.
Will the College and lecture rooms be set up to comply with two-metre social distance?

Yes this is correct.

In addition to this, everyone on campus must:

  • Follow social distancing of two metres which is mandated by the HSE and use lecture rooms set up to support two-metre social distancing.
  • Follow all HSE and Government guidance for Higher Education Institutions.
What will be the procedure when I enter and leave a lecture room?

Lecturers and learners are required when entering and leaving a lecture room to wipe their desks and chairs before and after lectures. Disinfectant wipes will be provided in every room. 

Housekeeping team members will sanitise and clean regularly on a daily basis; however, to protect yourself and others, we request that everyone wipes down their desk before and after use.

Where lecturers are in close contact with learners and cannot social distance to two metres, do all parties have to wear face masks?

Where two-meter social distancing cannot be maintained, e.g. lab and studio work, both lectures and learners will be required to wear face masks at all times. One-meter social distancing must be maintained at a minimum. 

 

What happens if the government puts a ‘local restriction’ in an area that a lecturer lives in?

All parties must follow Government and HSE guidelines.

If you are unable to attend campus to deliver your lecture, please liaise with your Programme Director who will seek to identify the best solution. This may include:

  • cancelling and rescheduling classes for the period of illness.
  • enabling online delivery of the class where possible;
    • the content of the class is suitable for online delivery.
    • you are medically fit to deliver the class online.
  • Assigning another lecturer to teach the module on a temporary basis.
If a lecturer has been told to self-isolate or if they have COVID symptoms:

All parties must follow Government and HSE guidelines.

If you are unable to attend campus to deliver your lecture, please liaise with your Programme Director who will seek to identify the best solution. This may include:

  • cancelling and rescheduling classes for the period of illness.
  • enabling online delivery of the class where possible;
    • the content of the class is suitable for online delivery.
    • you are medically fit to deliver the class online.
  • assigning another lecturer to teach the module on a temporary basis.
If a learner starts coughing in class or the lecturer believes a learner is unwell, can the lecturer ask them to leave?

There will be an informative and educational COVID-19 session for all new and returning learners.

Lecturers should start the lecture with a safety announcement (this will be issued in the coming weeks by RGC). The aim should be to educate rather than to instil fear. Anyone who has any of the COVID-19 symptoms will be asked not to attend the College.

Asking the learner to step outside the lecture room is an option; however, all parties need to be professional and considerate. A suggestion may be that they could leave the room for air, evaluate how they feel and if they think they have any of the COVID-19 symptoms. They should leave the campus or go to the isolation room if they cannot leave immediately and seek medical attention from a GP. 

If an issue persists in a lecture room, this should be managed at faculty level by the Programme Director.

Should windows be opened during lectures to aid ventilation?

At the beginning of a lecture (or at any time during the lecture) the lecturer may ask the learners to open the windows nearest to them to allow circulation of air. 

It will be up to each lecturer and learner group to make the decision on the number of windows that may be opened, depending on the weather, heat and preference of all those in the lecture room.

Also, remember that all lecture rooms will have about 20% the normal capacity, so in the past where 100 learners were in a lecture, only 20 will be facilitated to comply with two-metre social distancing.

Will classrooms with no/limited windows and no/limited ventilation be used?

All rooms will be used; those with no/limited windows will have capacity reduced and are mostly computer laboratory, studio or similar type dynamic environment where small numbers work on projects together. 

All learners and lecturers will be required to wear face masks in these environments and maintain a one-metre social distance at all times. There will also be good hygiene measures in place for such a set-up, such as wipe-down of shared equipment before and after use.

What arrangements are planned for those who meet learners face-to-face for one-to-one meetings, e.g. Careers, Counselling, Tutors, etc.?

We encourage you to hold face-to-face meetings over Zoom. In limited circumstances, where all parties are in good health, two people may meet in a room, once they are socially distanced by at least one metre and both parties wear face masks.

 

Will online teaching be provided from lecture rooms in College, and what technology will be available to support this?

Yes. All lecture rooms and labs, on all campuses, are being fitted out to facilitate hybrid teaching delivering lectures to both remote learners and learners in rooms. There will be one or more cameras and microphones for use through Zoom. Training and teaching supports will be provided. Please liaise directly with your Faculty Head or Programme Director.

 

Will staff be able to teach solely online if they are living with someone in a vulnerable category?

The college is seeking to deliver in-class lecturing for as many learners as possible. Staff who live with individuals considered to be ’very high risk' should, upon their return to work, practice heightened vigilance with regard to handwashing, respiratory hygiene and use of personal protective equipment in order to minimise the possibility of infection.

 

What kind of support would be available to staff if they don't have the necessary ICT facilities, skills or equipment to facilitate effective online teaching and learning?

The IT and Digital Learning Departments are available to support, advise and train faculties and their lecturers in the delivery of effective online teaching. New online courses are being developed to support this. Please liaise directly with you Faculty Head or Programme Director.

 

Who gets to decide which learners can attend in the classroom and which ones have to go online?

Faculties are best placed to determine the make-up of groups’ allocation for on-campus and remote access groups as this will vary programme by programme and even module by module. In doing so all learners should be treated equally.  IT will be providing an on-site support service.

 

Will hard copy notes, material, handouts be provided by lecturers to learners?

To comply with the best health and safety regulations, we are discouraging lecturers handing out hard copy notes, material and handouts. This decision will be on an individual lecturer-by-lecturer basis in conjunction with the programme director.

This policy also facilitates those learners who choose to receive lectures remotely and by live streaming. All material will be posted on Moodle for access to all registered learners.

What will my timetable/schedule look like?

For most lecturers, their learners will have a minimum of up to 50% of all lecturing delivered face-to-face, with the remainder being online delivery for Semester One.

For programmes that previously used on-campus face-to-face delivery:

  • Your faculty intends to deliver 50% of the teaching, learning and assessment experience using on-campus face-to-face delivery, subject to prevailing government health and safety advice.
  • Your faculty will advise you on exact details as to when you will be in class/on campus so that you can schedule same.
  • Your programme will be supported with online capture, recording and engagement to facilitate all learners.
  • The College has invested significantly in additional on-campus and online resources to further enhance programme delivery and overall learner experience in 2020/21.
Will formal attendance be taken in in-person lectures?

Yes, formal attendance will be undertaken by all lecturers in all in-person lectures. It is the responsibility of all faculties to ensure all learners' attendance is recorded in electronic format using the attendance app, as this produces up-to-date attendance sheets, rota for learners to attend in-person lectures and their contact tracing details, as well as complying with visa regulations for non-EU learners.

 

General FAQs for Staff and Lecturers
What measures has Griffith College put in place to protect staff from COVID-19?

Griffith College has put a range of measures in place to protect learners, staff and visitors during COVID-19.  For Semester One, these include a hybrid teaching model that supports social distancing measures.

Each faculty is working on plans whereby learners will be in lecture rooms for face-to-face classes for a minimum of 50% of the time. All lecture rooms will be set up to support two-metre social distancing. Specific plans for lab and studio work are available from your Programme Director.

Wherever practical, smaller groups in the creative programmes and those for tutorials and seminars will take place in face-to-face suitable venues on campus (please see FAQ below on facemasks).

Other measures include:

  • Clear signage at all entrances to buildings and within buildings of the COVID-19 precautions that apply to everyone; hand hygiene, coughing and sneezing etiquette; social distancing and the wearing of face masks in designated areas.
  • A one-way entry and exit route for buildings, where possible.
  • The provision of hand sanitisers and dispensers throughout the campus.
  • A keep left and keep moving policy on all stairways.
  • A one-person policy for all lifts on campus.
  • Clearly designated seating that maintains social distancing.
  • For staff, a distance of two metres should be maintained between the staff member and learners. Where there is a risk that the two-metre distance could be compromised or where teaching activity requires the staff member to be less than two metres from the learner, staff should wear a face covering, or other appropriate protection to be provided by the College.
  • Gloves should not be worn unless required and must never be used as a substitute for hand hygiene.
  • Before and after each lecture, both lecturer and learners will be asked to clean their desk and chair with disinfectant wipes – there will be disinfectant wipes supplied in each room for this purpose and signage will be in place to support such actions by all parties.
  • If people spend more than two hours or more in a shared space together, they may be regarded as COVID-19 close contacts in the event that someone present is subsequently identified as a case. All staff must maintain their own contact tracing lists (please see FAQ below on contact tracing).
Do learners, staff and residents need to wear face coverings on campus?

Yes, learners, staff and residents will be required to wear face masks on campus in order to keep everyone safe. While on campus we are asking all lecturers, learners, residents and staff to wear face coverings at all times in common areas and also anywhere you can’t social distance by two metres.

How will lecturers, staff and learners move in and out of buildings?

Everyone will walk on the left-hand side of the corridors at all times. There will be signage to remind everyone of this.

One-way systems will be in operation where necessary. Everyone should maintain social distance and wear face masks at all times when moving around within campus buildings. 

The aim of everyone is to minimise congregations in between classes. With lecture room capacity reduced by up to 80%, it is likely this may not be an issue. As a member of staff, if you do notice learners congregating please ask them to disperse and make their way to their destination or exit the building.

What will walking within common areas look like?

All staff members, lecturers and learners are required to wear face coverings at all times when walking in common areas.

Learners and lecturers will be discouraged from gathering in internal common areas other than the College restaurant (which will be set up so that everyone is socially distanced).

Do I have to wear a face covering while sitting at my desk?

Face coverings can be removed once you reach your office or lecturer’s desk. Many staff members have already been provided with face coverings, but if you need a face covering, please contact your faculty or department head who will need to let us know of the numbers required. 

Where anyone cannot maintain social distancing of two metres, all parties must wear a face covering. This will be the case for practical and creative type programmes.

Who will enforce mask wearing, desk cleaning and everyone complying with social distancing?

You will need to wear a face covering; this is a mandatory requirement. The Government has also provided Implementation Guidelines for Public Health Measures in Higher Education. These will apply to all staff and students of Griffith College until further notice.

Griffith College will require all learners to wear face coverings for all teaching and learning events.

Teaching staff have the option to wear visors where possible instead of face coverings while teaching as this will reduce the impact on communication

This is the responsibility of everyone.

We are ‘all in this together’ and we all should be happy to point out diplomatically to any colleague, staff member, learner or visitor for the need to:

  • Wear a facemask in all places other than at one's desk.
  • Comply with the two-metre social distance everywhere.
  • Ensure no congregating in corridors, stairs etc.

These messages will be clearly communicated to everyone in advance of term, to avoid any confusion for both learners and staff. This will also include any updates released by the Government as they arise.

This information will be communicated to our learners and we all need to encourage learners to adhere to COVID-19 guidelines. There are two exceptions as outlined below:

  • There is a medical exception for not wearing a face covering due to health reasons - the Implementation Guidelines for Public Health Measures in Higher Education advises that appropriate arrangements are in place whereby staff or learners who are vulnerable can declare this and that specific appropriate measures can be put in place where they do not need to wear a face covering on health grounds.
  • Learners with hearing difficulties may wear face coverings with clear panels to facilitate them. For those learners with hearing difficulties or for those students who rely on facial cues, the Irish Deaf Society is selling an FDA-approved face mask that has a clear panel.
Are all staff required to maintain a contact tracing log?

All staff members will be required to log details if they have been in contact with someone for more than 15 minutes at less than 2 metres or were in contact with anyone for more than two hours. 

This is a government requirement. 

Information on a departmental contract tracing form has been sent to all Department Heads. Your department head will create an online form that all staff members will be able to access to keep details of their close contacts at Griffith College. Your line manager/programme director will send you an online form for you to use to track close contacts. 

This online e-form has been circulated by the RGC (update 17 – 4th September 2020) to all department heads. More information is available from your department head. 

As a lecturer or staff member, do I need to do anything before l can return to the campus/deliver a lecture?

All full-time and part-time staff members, including all lecturers, are required to complete our return to work training or questionnaire. All details have been communicated to all staff and all lecturers at all campuses via email (RGC update 18 – 7th September 2020).

This your responsibility. Remember, this is for your safety! If you have any symptoms of the virus, you should not return to work and inform your line manager immediately.

  1. If you had returned to campus in July after the lockdown in March, then went back to working from home in August, and are now returning to campus again, please complete this COVID-19 Return to campus form. This is a GC Microsoft office form which all staff members can access to by logging in using their regular log-in details. If you are unable to access this form, contact the helpdesk to get access.
  1. If you have never returned to campus since the initial lockdown in March, please complete the full training using this link. The completion certificate should be emailed to your line manager/programme director.
  1. If you had returned to campus and never completed any training or form, please complete the full training using this link. The completion certificate should be emailed to your line manager/programme director.
  1. If you have continued to work on campus following your initial return to campus, you do not need to complete anything because you are not returning to campus; namely, you never left.
  1. If you remained on campus the whole time (you are an essential worker as categorised by the Government), then you do not need to complete anything. However, you are expected to follow the safety measures on campus.
  1. If you are unsure which scenario applies to you, please complete the full training using this link. There is no harm in doing this one!

All forms and a copy of the training certificates need to be sent to your line manager, faculty head or programme director for retention for HSE or HSA review, as required.

Will guidance be provided to lecturers (and learners) outlining under what circumstances they should not attend campus?

Yes. This will be in line with HSE guidance.

This will be managed at faculty level by the Programme Director. You should not attend the campus nor attend College if you have any of the following symptoms:

  • A fever (high temperature of 38 degrees Celsius or above).
  • A cough (any type of cough).
  • Shortness of breath (breathing difficulties).
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.

In addition to the above, you should not attend College if:

  • you are awaiting a COVID-19 test.
  • you are awaiting the result of a COVID-19 test.
  • you have returned from a country not on the Irish Government’s green list and are within the mandated 14-day restricted movement period.
  • you are considered a close contact of a current COVID-19 case and have been advised to self-isolate or restrict your movement by a GP/HSE.
What should I do if I am unable to attend campus due to the reasons outlined in FAQ listed above?

If you are unable to attend campus to deliver your lecture, please liaise with your Programme Director who will seek to identify the best solution. This may include:

  • cancelling and rescheduling classes for the period of illness.
  • enabling online delivery of the class where possible, assuming:
    • the content of the class is suitable for online delivery.
    • you are medically fit to deliver the class online.
  • Assigning another lecturer to teach the module on a temporary basis.
If a household member is asked to self-isolate, should I come to college?

No, unless the HSE advises otherwise. Likewise, one should not attend the campus nor attend College if one has any of the following symptoms:

  • A fever (high temperature, 38 3 degrees Celsius or above)
  • A cough (any type of cough)
  • Shortness of breath (breathing difficulties)
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
Will staff offices need to be set up so that everyone can social distance to two metres?

Yes, all staff are asked to comply with the two-metre social distance in their offices at all times. 

Achieving this may involve a combination of changing the set-up of the office, moving shared printers and staff using the office on a rotational basis, as agreed with their manager and other colleagues sharing the space. Staff may also, with their manager's agreement, have the option to temporarily re-locate to another shared office space on the campus, if available.

What face-to-face elements are being considered for orientation?

The Induction Committee is currently planning an updated programme that aims to keep as much of induction in-person as possible. This will mean induction running over an extended period in the auditorium and being supported by online platforms/materials.

To what extent, if any, will on-site catering operate when teaching resumes?

Our external catering providers will be opening on Monday 5th of October, with social distancing measures in place and sanitising stations.

How do you plan to ensure social distancing of learners and staff around entrance and exits of buildings, lecture rooms and common areas?

Clear guidelines will be communicated to all campus users. All staff must complete COVID-19 return to work training before returning to campus. A one-way system will be in place to assist with social distancing. Classes will stay in rooms to reduce movement around campus (lecturers will move, rather than learners). Class start and finish times may need to be staggered to reduce numbers moving all at the same time.

Learners will receive COVID-19 H&S related training during induction and digital & print signage campaigns will be used to reinforce messaging across the campuses.

 

Will the College be undertaking temperature checks for staff and learners?

Thermal scanners are effective in detecting people who have a fever (i.e. have a higher than normal body temperature). They cannot detect people who are infected with COVID-19. There are many causes of fever.

The current guidance from the HSE is that educational institutions should not be undertaking temperature checks for staff and learners.

How long is it safe to wear the same face covering?

It is a good idea to change reusable face coverings each day. 

If you are only using it for popping into the shop for an hour or so, you can use the same face covering again and again for a few days. Never share face coverings with friends or other family members. (Quoted from Luke O’Neill, professor of biochemistry in the school of biochemistry and immunology at Trinity College Dublin – Irish Times 10th Sept 2020)

How often should reusable face coverings be washed?

Wash face coverings in warm soapy water in the sink or you can put it in the washing machine [with other clothes] on a 60-degree wash cycle. The key thing is to build up a good lather because the virus hates soap. Reusable face coverings made from cotton are preferable as they are easier to wash than linen or silk face coverings. Reusable face coverings do not need to be sterilised. (Quoted from Luke O’Neill, professor of biochemistry in the school of biochemistry and immunology at Trinity College Dublin – Irish Times 10th Sept 2020)

Can reusable face coverings be safely left on desks and tables or in cars?

It is best practice to keep your reusable face covering in a sealable, clean, waterproof plastic bag when you are not using it. That way, you are avoiding the risk of the virus spreading to another surface if you are infected or if you have inadvertently picked up the virus from someone coughing on your face mask. (Quoted from Luke O’Neill, professor of biochemistry in the school of biochemistry and immunology at Trinity College Dublin – Irish Times 10th Sept 2020)

How dangerous is it to touch face masks when you are removing them from your face?

It’s best to touch only the handles of your reusable face covering when putting it on and taking it off so as to avoid the risk of picking up the virus from the face covering and then touching your face afterward.

How will examinations be conducted?

Griffith College will have open-book, remote/online examinations in the February 2021, June 2021 and August 2021 examination periods.
 
Dates and arrangements are subject to change based on ongoing guidance from health authorities.

 

How will registration be managed?

Exam results will be issued on Friday the 18th of September for undergraduate learners, giving them three weeks to register prior to lectures commencing. It is the responsibility of all faculties to ensure all their learners are formally registered online as this information produces up to date attendance sheets, the rota for learners to attend in-person lectures and their contact tracing details.

How do I prepare myself for returning to Griffith College?

The College advises staff to continue to observe best practices in protecting themselves from COVID-19, and in limiting the possibility of spreading infection:

  • Wash your hands properly and regularly
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough and sneeze
  • Observe social distancing
  • Wear a face covering on public transport and in spaces where social distancing is not possible

Visit the HSE website for the most up-to-date and accurate information.

The College will continue to update this page and will contact learners directly as and when circumstances change.

How can I protect myself from COVID-19?

The most important action we can take to protect ourselves from the COVID-19 Coronavirus is regular hand-washing, using hand sanitiser and practicing good respiratory hygiene.

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing and discard the used tissue.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.

Please be wary of these symptoms and seek immediate medical attention by phone should such symptoms occur.

What actions have been taken at Griffith College to look after your health and safety?

Hand sanitisers are available at all four campus locations and in Griffith Halls of Residence, at entrances to all buildings. Using the sanitisers can quickly reduce the number of microbes on hands. However, washing your hands with soap and warm water for at least twenty seconds remains the most effective way to protect yourself.

The Housekeeping team will be disinfecting all ‘touchpoints’ twice per day and will be visible on campus throughout each day for your safety.

Posters, banners, floor markings with information about keeping yourself safe have been put up in multiple places on campus. 

The College has a COVID-19 Steering Group (CSG) which is in contact with HSE about ongoing developments.

Where can I find the most up-to-date information?

We will make every effort to keep our website current as the situation evolves. However, the most up-to-date information on the virus can be found at:

You can also view up-to-date information from the HPSC at the link below.

I'm feeling really anxious about COVID-19; what should I do?

Taking care of yourself mentally and emotionally is just as vital as taking care of your physical well-being. The HSE has created a document to help in that task, which you can download here

If you want to speak with a private counsellor, Griffith offers a counselling service free of charge to all learners and staff. To make an appointment, you can email [email protected] or call 085 1521511. Sessions are available over the phone and via Skype. Learn more about Griffith's counselling service.

 

As a manager, what should I do when a staff member contacts me about potential COVID-19 infection?

You need to establish specifically:

  • Whether the staff member has consulted a doctor or the HSE (if not, they should be advised to do so immediately).
  • Whether the staff member has been diagnosed as an actual or probable case. If the staff member is medically diagnosed with COVID-19, they should go on sick leave.
  • Contact RGC to report the diagnosis.
  • Ensure the staff member seeks appropriate medical appointment and confirmation as soon as possible and that they keep in communication with you and do as directed by the HSE.
What happens if a learner in my lecture or a colleague is diagnosed with COVID-19?

If a learner in a lecture or a colleague is diagnosed with COVID-19, the HSE will advise the RGC or the individual on what to do and what to do with their log of close contacts. 

The HSE will activate contact tracing and advise all close contacts that they need to restrict their movements for 14 days. Contact tracing identifies people who were in close contact with someone who has COVID-19. The HSE state that ‘a close contact can mean someone who has spent more than 15 minutes of face-to-face contact within (less than) 2 metres of an infected person in any setting’. All close contacts will be asked to take a COVID-19 test and restrict their movements for 14 days.

You should work from home (if fit to do so) for up to 14 days or as advised by your GP or the HSE. You should not return to the College until advised by your GP or the HSE and you must be five days fever free (which may run concurrently with the 14 days isolation period).

Colleges should remain open unless there is clear public health advice that they should close. Likewise, the faculty and all staff should work as normal unless advised by the HSE otherwise.

All staff should be encouraged to download the Government's COVID app to assist in the identification of close contacts.

I have been diagnosed with COVI-19, what should I do in relation to work?

You should advise both your manager and RGC (Re-opening Griffith College subgroup) of a positive result. The HSE will advise you on what to you with your log of close contacts. The HSE will activate contact tracing and advise your close contacts that they too need to restrict their movements for 14 days. You should work from home (if fit to do so) for up to 14 days or as advised by your GP or the HSE. You should not return to the College until advised by your GP or the HSE and you must be five days fever free (which may run concurrently with the 14 days isolation period).

 

I have been advised medically/by the HSE to restrict my movements as I am a close contact or live with a person with a diagnosis of COVID-19; should I come into the College?

You will be medically advised by your GP or the HSE to restrict your movements if you have no symptoms but you are a close contact of a confirmed case or live with someone with symptoms. You should arrange a COVID-19 test and advise your manager and RGC (Re-opening Griffith College subgroup) of same and the outcome result and you should work from home for up to 14 days are as advised by your GP or the HSE.

If I travel abroad and have to restrict my movements on return, should I come into the College?

The current government advice is not to travel overseas. Any person coming into Ireland (apart from Northern Ireland and countries on the Green List) is required to restrict their movements for 14 days. If you return from a ‘green list’ country there is no requirement to restrict your movements. However, the Green list and requirements to restrict movement will be regularly reviewed and may change, so you should be aware of whatever restricted movement requirements are in place on the date of return to Ireland.

 

I care for and live with a person who is in the very high risk category; should I come into the College?

Yes, one should work from the College as required and as agreed with your Manager. Current advice from the HSE is that if you are caring for someone at a higher risk from COVID-19, it is very important that you follow the advice on how to protect yourself from COVID-19 and when on campus you should wear a face mask and maintain two-metre distancing.

Three apprentices around a computer

€3,000 apprenticeship incentive scheme to be offered

25 August, 2020

Employers will be entitled to a financial incentive to the value of €3,000 to take on apprentices