Read our frequently asked questions

Tuesday 01 September 2020.

 
 

(Foreign Languages from 26th September)

IH London never stopped teaching and all our courses are available online, in virtual classrooms, with IH London teachers delivering live interactive lessons, with online group activities with other students and an online social programme. You can book and take an online course now.

 

The building had to close and face-to-face teaching was put on hold, when the government advised all schools to close due to Covid-19. IH London remains open for online teaching, but face-to-face lessons are not taking place at the moment. Staff are working from home and are available to support students, agents and parents.

 

In the first stage of reopening the school, the IH London exams department is now open for students to sit face-to-face exams, socially distanced. The LanguageCert exam can still be taken online.

There will be a number of safety measures in place at the school, so students can learn safely together, while maintaining social distancing:

  • Class sizes will be 8 maximum for large rooms and 6 maximum for medium rooms to enable social distancing.
  • Break times will be staggered so students are not moving around the corridors or in communal areas at the same time. Teachers will advise of break times on arrival.
  • The locations of classes will be staged across different floors to ensure separation is maintained between different classes
  • One-to-One lessons will be held in classrooms big enough to socially distance
  • Classrooms will be sanitized after each session
  • Hand sanitizer will be available on each floor
  • Hand sanitizer will be available in each classroom
  • One-way system for using the two stairwells (this will be signposted and explained)
  • Maximum of 2 people at a time in the lift
  • The school building will be cleaned and sanitized every day with sweeps every hour
  • Hallway doors will be open to aid ventilation and so students and staff don’t need to touch the doors
  • Classrooms doors will be left open for ventilation and to minimise contact with surfaces
  • Online and digital resources will be used instead of physical hard copies of materials
  • Students will have their own personal course book
  • Reception will have a screen between students and staff, with reception staff wearing masks
  • Teachers will wear masks, if this is current government guidance in September, and will maintain social distancing in classrooms
  • Students will be encouraged to wear masks, if this is current government guidance in September, and any student who would prefer to wear a mask, even if guidance has changed, will be welcome to.
  • CELTA classes will be in the conference room to accommodate 15 trainee teachers, teaching practice students, and course tutors. A video link will be offered for the teaching practice observations.
  • We have changed the times of some of our lessons, so you can travel when it is quieter. See question 10 for more details.

We are keeping up-to-date and will follow all NHS and government advice as it issued.

  • Day 1 inductions will be online, with a virtual tour of the school building and how to access it
  • Registration will be completed digitally
  • We will ask for photos of passports to be sent digitally pre arrival, so we don’t handle your passport
  • All language level testing will be done online pre arrival
  • The speaking placement test will be conducted online pre arrival
  • Students will be asked to declare whether they have felt unwell prior to arrival

 

From the 08 June 2020, the government has said anyone arriving from outside of the UK will need to quarantine for 14 days. We don’t think this measure will still be in place in September, but we have made sure you can safely quarantine with us if you need to. See question 6 for more details.

The UK government has announced a two-week quarantine period for anyone arriving in the UK from the 08 June 2020. We don’t think this will still be in place when the school opens in September; the government is reviewing it every 3 weeks. We have put measures in place to ensure you can quarantine with us safely if needed.

If you are asked to quarantine, then you can do that with your homestay host or at our student residence Chapter Kings Cross. All under 18s will be in homestay. You will need to give border control the address of where you are staying and how you are travelling there (you can book a private transfer to the residence through IH London). Your homestay host or IH London staff if you are in a residence will provide support and help with food and other items that you need while quarantining.

You will be able to learn online and meet other students online in our virtual classrooms, complete with online social activities, while you are in quarantine.

All our usual accommodation options will be available for your course from September: both student residences and homestay.

View all accommodation options

Find out more about the new safety measures in student residences.

Residences

  • Restricted access to communal areas
  • 24 hour staffing for any assistance needed
  • Students will have their own kitchenware for shared kitchens. A self-managed rota system will be in place for kitchen use.
  • Shared kitchens will be deep cleaned once a week
  • No visitors to be allowed in residences
  • As before, over 18s only in residences
  • If you need to quarantine at any point during your stay, IHL will provide support and help with food and other items that you need.
  • View the student residences comittment to student safety

Homestay

  • Host families will follow all government guidelines on social distancing
  • One student per household
  • Hosts will ensure communal areas are maintained to a high degree of cleanliness
  • If you need to quarantine at any point during your stay, hosts will provide support and help with food and other items that you need.

For now, we won’t be offering shared transfers from the airport, unless you are arriving with someone and request to book a transfer together. The airport transfers will be in taxis allocated for IH London and will have a partition between the passenger and the driver. The taxis will be sanitized after each passenger journey.

We have changed the times of some of our lessons, so you can travel when it is quieter.

  • General English 15: 10.00 – 13.00
  • General English 20: 10:00 – 13:00 and 13:30 – 14:25
  • IELTS 15: 13: 15  – 16:15
  • IELTS 20: 12:00 – 12:55 and 13.15 – 16.15

General English 25 is not available at this time, to ensure our students are not travelling at the busiest travelling times. The safety of our students is our priority.

You can walk to the school from our student residences: Chapter Kings Cross is a 30-minute walk, Chapter Islington is a 55-minute walk and Chapter Highbury is a 60-minute walk. We will provide walking maps and you can see the sights of London along the way.

You can also cycle using a rented bike from a ‘Boris bike docking station’, but please be very careful and wear a cycle helmet. IH London can provide a cycling map.

The Mayor of London has announced that large areas of London will be closed to cars and vans to allow people to walk and cycle more safely.

Public transport is running, if you would prefer to take a bus or the tube, using safety measures such as wearing a mask and washing your hands thoroughly.

It’s a big part of every course to be able to practise English outside the classroom and explore London.

We will still be running our social programme with lots of outdoor activities. London is a great place to explore by foot, with many places much closer than they appear on a tube map, with sights to see everywhere you look. There will be minimal use of transport, avoided wherever possible. Risks assessments will be completed for every activity and we will only offer activities where we can guarantee social distancing.

Under the current guidance, we won’t be running day trips to other cities because it involves extended time on shared transport and the safety of students must come first. We will review this if the official advice changes. We are keen to run them again too, as soon as it is safe to do so.

We will complement our face-to-face social activity with online social activities for students.

We have our own social programmes team who will keep you up-to-date with everything you can do in London. We know London and we know there will be lots of new innovative exciting ways to enjoy your time at a safe social distance.

The latest government announcement means that museums, galleries, cafes, restaurants and many more attractions will be able to open from the 04 July 2020.

Break times will be staggered so that the communal areas are spacious enough to distance. The social activities programme will also be running with outside activities and safe indoor activities.

Under current government guidelines, people can meet up with up to six other people as long as they are outside and stay 2 metres apart (will reduce to 1 metre apart from 04 July). From the 04 July, two households will be able to meet indoors or outdoors. Restrictions are likely to be lifted further by September.

London has many parks and green spaces for you to enjoy with new friends. Did you know London has 3,000 parks that are open to the public? 18% of London is free open green space. There are also eight royal parks in the city to enjoy.

There are also so many landmarks and famous sights in London to enjoy from outdoors: Buckingham Palace, Piccadilly Circus, Chinatown, Trafalgar Square, London’s iconic Tower Bridge and Millennium Bridge, the Houses of Parliament, Big Ben, The Beatles Abbey Road zebra crossing, street artists in Covent Garden – the list goes on and on! Our social programmes team will be your guide.

The latest government announcement means that museums, galleries, cafes, restaurants and many more attractions will be able to open from the 04 July 2020.

We are in the heart of Covent Garden, with many, many, cafes, food stalls and food shops. A lot of these are already open for take away food and drink.

You can enjoy your food in one of London’s many parks or in the communal areas at the school, which will have break times staggered so they are quiet enough to maintain social distancing and they will be sanitized regularly (see question 4 for more details).

The latest government announcement means that cafes, restaurants and pubs can reopen for indoor or outdoor dining from the 04 July 2020.

Students need to let us know straight away if they feel unwell. They can notify us by call, WhatsApp, text or the IH London emergency number. Full details will be given in their starter pack. We have protocols in place for this situation and will make sure the student who is ill is well cared for, and that other students are safe.

Yes, we will still be running our online courses. They have been very popular and will become part of our permanent range of courses.

Our online English courses are a great way to prepare for your trip to the UK and a great way to keep practising your English after you return home. View our online English courses

We also plan to continue with our online Foreign Language courses, so you can learn a different language in the most convenient way for you.

We are here to help you learn in the best possible way for you. We’d like to hear from you if you have any other questions about visiting us  or anything else we can help you with.

Contact us on sales@ihlondon.com

Online courses available now

All online courses are live with IH London teachers

IH London never stopped teaching and all our courses are available online, in virtual classrooms, with IH London teachers delivering live interactive lessons, with online group activities with other students and an online social programme. It’s a great way to prepare for your trip to the UK.

IH London staff are working from home and are available to support students, agents and parents.

IH London teachers are highly qualified, have years of teaching experience, and many are published authors. You get the same great quality teaching in our virtual classrooms, because it’s the same great teachers.

As always, all our teachers are CELTA-qualified and many are Delta-qualified. More than 80% of our teachers are also teacher trainers.

Learn English courses online

Executive courses online

Foreign Languages online

Teacher Training online

Young Learner online

You can book online or email sales@ihlondon.com

Support

Our staff are available to help you.

Contact student services:
info@ihlondon.com
020 7611 2400 (Select option 4 to speak to student services)
All current students also have the emergency student welfare mobile phone number

Contact the accommodation team: accommodation@ihlondon.com

Contact the student welfare team: welfare.officer@ihlondon.com

Further updates

We are here for your safety and well-being. We will continue to monitor the situation very closely, keeping you up-to-date. If you have any concerns at all, please speak to us.

Our story

Our story began in 1953, with our founders John Haycraft (CBE) and his wife Brita Haycraft who started a school because they believed in international communication and building communities across cultures.

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Free resources for you

We publish interesting articles, resources and guides and make them available to everyone on our blog. If you’d like to see an article, guide or learning resource on a particular topic let us know!

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