COVID-19: Our plans for September 2020

Aisling Kiely

Firstly, I would like to publicly thank all our staff at Spirit Studios for their contribution and efforts in keeping the education flowing for our students and helping us to prepare for September and beyond as efficiently, effectively and creatively as possible, despite some of those being equally affected by unfamiliar times themselves. 

Our progress so far 

Since mid-March, we have worked extremely hard to quickly but carefully respond to the changes brought to us all as a result of the Coronavirus, and have done so with balance, speed and timely communications to all our students and staff. 

Since the beginning of lockdown, and to this day and beyond, we have made and continue to make changes that chart the uneven ground and map out the months ahead. 

Following a wide variety of advice and future predictions from the professional health bodies and the UK Government, mindful and innovative decisions have been made that balance the needs of every single student and member of staff, as well as the wider community, taking extra consideration for those amongst us with hidden disabilities, ensuring that all are able to maintain their full education without the necessity to be in the building. 

While the easing of lockdown continues, realistically the national and local situation remains uncertain. And so, our plan beginning for September 2020 takes into consideration the current situation and any further changes that may arise in the future. 

Changes for September 2020

Teaching delivery

Considering all factors carefully, we have flexibly planned a highly creative, hybrid approach to all our degree courses, across all study years, that include a mix of in person practical teaching, with personal studio time and highly creative Spirit-led events.  

Starting from September 2020, we will be taking a hybrid approach to our teaching delivery. While we intend for lessons to be delivered in person (face-to-face) as much as possible, and where we can best ensure the well-being of our students, we will be shoring our defences by also delivering teaching online, and along with our full transition to G-Suite for Education, we have invested in cutting-edge streaming technology and multiple camera installations in all our studios that provide a solid experience for all students to take advantage of.

These plans make the event of a second spike of Coronavirus fully manageable; we are now safe in the knowledge that the content for all courses in Semester One (Sept 20 – Jan 21) can be delivered to a very high, creative and engaging standard online, but keep us well placed in any ‘worst case scenario’.

Throughout the Semester, creative events will also be taking place for our students in our studios, but will also be streamed on our YouTube channels for those unable to attend in person. These informal creative events will take full advantage of our Industry partners, our new technology and the transferable knowledge of all our staff, including those who don’t ordinarily teach. 

Robust safety measures put in place 

The decisions we have made ensure that our students’ safety, education, experience and overall well-being remain our top priority. 

In the last few weeks, we have assessed and installed new robust safety measures throughout the building to create a clean and safe environment for all our students and staff. Positioned around the building we have significant access to hand-sanitisation, have installed screens, implemented brand new cleaning regimes and re-imagined the flow of people throughout the building.  

Access to our studios 

With some necessary controls, Spirit Studios will be open soon for all our students to confidently access our studios for their own creative uses. 

With strict measures in place, our studios will be open for all students to book and use them well before the Semester begins, where we will continue to provide our knowledge, assistance and guidance to all of our students while using the studios during this period. 

With the implementation of new technology, we welcome our students to creatively use our studios, in a way perhaps that they haven’t used them before, and with our help, enthusiasm and creativity to guide. 

With a new project studio to allow students to wire up a recording studio, as well as the introduction of new equipment, including modular synthesisers, outboard equipment, new MIDI Controllers, drum machines, guitars, amplifiers, microphones and more, creativity will flow.   

New technologies 

We have many new additions to our facilities that will significantly aid our excellent online and offline teaching delivery, by investing in new software and hardware. 

These new technologies alone will enable our Mac Suites and studios to be optimised for streaming content online, as well as our incredibly forward thinking plans to install ‘Remote Desktop Technologies’ that allow our students exclusive access to our highly equipped workstations from the comfort of their own home, from desktop, tablet or mobile. 

Despite these unprecedented times, I am very confident that we have proved our ability to adapt to change, work efficiently, effectively and collectively, and most importantly have continued to provide all of our new and returning students with the best possible education and creative experience.   

I am also confident that we will come out of this stronger together, and on behalf of everyone at Spirit Studios, we look forward to welcoming you into our classrooms and studios soon. 

 

With my very best wishes, 

Adrian Greensides,

Principal.