In our blog 'Step Into the Light', we outlined why it is so important, once it is safe, to come back to Escape Studios and be together. In this blog, we'll be sharing how you can prepare for face to face teaching and everything we're doing to help keep you safe. We believe the time is right to get back together and open our doors, so you gain the full benefit of the course you worked so hard to get on!

Over the past academic year, our students have adapted incredibly well and there was some great work produced, but that was because we all got better at communicating online. However, the course wasn’t DESIGNED that way. Our tutors are so much better in real life than in a rectangular box on your screen! Our experience shows that learning is more effective when you are together with your tutor and other students, sharing experience and solving problems quickly and easily.

Our Advice

We understand that some of you might be anxious because this is an experience you might not have had for a while. If you are now entering your first or second year you might not have experienced a lesson in our studios! So, let us reassure you.

We believe, as do the experts, that the impact of staying away and continuing to study online is far worse than being in a safe learning space with others. We know if things change we can flip back to online. But that time is not now. Now is the time to make the most of the education you earned.

If you’re wary about coming back here are some things that should reassure you:

· If you feel more comfortable, carry on wearing your mask. It’s up to you in class, but certainly, we want you to wear it in the corridors, out of respect for others who may also be nervous about the new more relaxed rules.

· Still nervous? Try slowly easing into being out. Over a few days, perhaps go for a walk and to get used to the new normal. You can still wear a mask. Start small and then end up going to a town centre or even do a little shopping!

· If you haven’t been to London for a while, why not explore some places around campus. These are a 5 minutes walk of Escape Studios and decide where you might buy your snacks from! You are studying in central London with so many great places nearby.

· If you are nervous about public transport then take a short trip outside of peak times to help you get used to it. Remember they do constant tests for Covid on the Underground and you still have to wear a mask unless you are exempt. It may feel strange at first, but try it out a few times.

· Are you already vaccinated?- great! If not, it's a good idea to consider it. Many local hospitals and surgeries are open for walk-ins and you can also make bookings online.

· If you don’t want to venture out for food, bring a packed lunch - you can eat in our kitchen area and help yourself to free tea and coffee.

· Pearson regularly check the ventilation and we will still have hand sanitising stations based around the building

· Remember, all your favourite local cafes and Pizza joints are open (Ecco Pizza, here we come!)

I remember my first day back at school - it can be daunting. But education is all about challenges. So, trust us - we’ll only operate in the building when it’s safe.

Invest in your future - you are in a good place so make the most of it!

If you are still nervous about coming back, check out this blog written by Chavi, our student counsellor, which although written earlier in the summer has plenty of useful advice!

By Saint Walker, Deputy Dean of Escape Studios