Coronavirus

Coronavirus

Update 8 May

Tuesday 6 May, the Dutch government announced that as of Monday 11 May, we can gradually loosen the measures in place in The Netherlands, starting to adjust measures locally. In this new phase it will be more important than ever to observe the basic rules: avoid busy places, keep a distance of 1.5 metres from other people, stay at home if you have cold-like symptoms, wash your hands often and cough and sneeze into your elbow.

Adjusted measures
The government will start by relaxing restrictions at local or neighbourhood level. Adjustments that will not make our streets, traffic and public transport any busier. The government will then relax restrictions at regional level and finally at national level. First small gatherings will be allowed, and later larger gatherings, so that everything remains as manageable and orderly as possible. The details will be worked out in the weeks ahead. On the website of the Dutch government, you can find more information.

Opening of higher education institutes
In line with the press conference, the higher education institutes have not yet been given a date for opening or relaxing measures. The Association of Applied Universities will investigate together with the Minister of Education the extent to which further relaxation is possible regarding testing and practical education, as of 15 June. This is in contrast to the measures that apply to MBO (vocational schools), where practical education and exams will again be possible under certain conditions from 15 June. The Association naturally questioned the Minister extensively and with some emphasis on the difference in approach with MBO. Precisely because this is disappointing to us. In addition, the Minister has indicated that this difference in approach results from the difference in terms of the burden on public transport. This is not about a difference in numbers, but about the supra-regional character of the travel movements within higher education, from both students and staff members.

HTH campuses, restaurants and Skotel remain closed
The announcements brought some good news for our valued Hospitality Industry. We would like to underpin, that these measures do not apply to the Hotelschool The Hague restaurants and Skotel, as they are part of education. As our outlets are real-life learning environments (“class rooms”), we must follow the measures that apply to higher education. As earlier announced to you last week, we will continue with digital and distance education for all bachelor courses, including practical education, until the end of the academic year (including the weeks after 1 June). This has not changed.

 

Update 30 April

Firstly, we would like to share our admiration of you, our students and staff members, in dealing with the challenging situation we are in. Over the past few weeks, we have experienced how the measures affect each of us and our organisation. We found a way to manage our everyday lives, even if it is not always easy. We are very much aware that the situation is far from being over, thus we will have to deal with the consequences in our daily lives for a longer period. We could never be prouder of our community and we truly believe that together we will come out stronger. 

Bachelor education after 1 June
Based on the decisions of the Dutch authorities last week and the discussions we had with other universities of applied sciences, we did not see another possibility than to decide that we will continue with digital and distance education for all bachelor courses, including practical education, until the end of the academic year (including the weeks after 1 June). We understand this is disappointing, as it is also for us.  

In all decisions, the health and safety of our community are our main priority. Although some of the measures taken by the government are eased, the situation is still precarious. Therefore, the government asked universities of applied sciences to continue with distance education until next academic year.

We need to prepare ourselves that reopening can only be done in small steps at a time for the safe, phased return of students and employees to the premises. Reopening the campuses of universities, including ours, will put more pressure on public transport and public areas and mean a higher risk of the virus spreading too quickly and widely. 

Next to that, many of our students experience travel restrictions which makes it difficult to travel back to The Netherlands. We certainly do not want students traveling from abroad risking a two-week quarantine upon arrival.

Last weeks, we received a lot of feedback on the online alternatives that we offered to our students. A lot positive, and some more critical. The latter makes sense, knowing we had to change to a totally different way of educating in just a few days. We listened carefully to your feedback, both on programme as on course level, and for block D we implemented improvements based on the feedback. Of course, we will continue to improve and ask our students and staff to keep on sharing feedback.

Exams for the bachelor programme
In the coming two weeks, the last alternative online exams for sit-down exams of block C will take place. The evaluation has already started, and the first signals are positive: students took part in most of the exams, and although during some exams technical hick-ups were experienced, most of the exams went well and with promising results in terms of pass rates. 

In the light of restrictions that still apply to universities of applied sciences and the use of public transport, we decided to have a similar online exam round in Block D. We believe this would create an equal experience for students in The Netherlands and abroad. We will stick to the normal planning of the exam round in D9 and D10. As far as we can oversee right now, we will not have an exam round on campus The Hague or campus Amsterdam in block D.

For phase 1, there will be no resit-round in D11 like we normally have. For all students there will be an extra round of sit-down exams on campus planned from 20-28 August; depending on the development of the COVID-19 situation and measures of the government. Because of the postponement of the RDP, there is no immediate effect for students by the switch from a D11 round to the August round.
Because of the alternative design of exams, we agreed with the CDC that lecturers will have 15 instead of 10 working days to grade an exam (if needed). 

Practical Experience 
We truly regret the fact that we cannot offer students the possibility to bring theory into practice on campus and that we need to continue the educational experience in a digital manner. The online alternative education and assessment for PE and MO, that we offer are based upon the learning goals that prepare PE students for their Practical Placement and MO students for their further Hotelschool The Hague study career, even though the way we learn and teach is different.

Based upon the experience and feedback from block C, we made improvements which resulted in a simulation programme for block D. After 1 June, we will continue this programme of the first five weeks of Block D in which the concerning learning goals are covered. In order to ensure that we are as close as possible to the real/usual environment, a link has been made between PE and MO so that they must collaborate online, e.g. with assignments for the PE’s, giving feedback and online progress and performance interviews. 

Please note that we will investigate ways to compensate our students for the missed experience and are thinking of alternative practical experiences at a later stage of their studies. Examples we will consider: gastronomy classes & power workshops, company visits, fieldtrips, alternative outdoor leadership experience, wine tasting classes, practical charity assignment and organising lunches and dinners within 1.5-meter concept.

Skotel
Unfortunately, we have to inform you that Skotel will not reopen this academic year. We know this is very disappointing for many of you, especially for the students of the August 2019 intake as they will not be able to move back to Skotel. We had to make this decision, based on the current situation and governmental measures in place. The concerning students will receive a separate email from Mr Smit with more information. 

The first-year students of course do not have to pay the Skotel fee for the time they did not spend in Skotel. We understand that this does not compensate for the disappointment and the missed learning opportunity, which is an important element of living in Skotel. We cannot inform you yet about what will happen after the summer. We are in close consultation with the local health authorities and an external expert in how we would be able to open Skotel and which precautions are necessary. We are currently preparing to make it possible for the February 2020 intake to move back in a safe and healthy living situation to Skotel in August, so they do not have to arrange housing themselves. The reopening of Skotel depends on the development of the COVID-19 situation and measures of the Dutch government. We expect to be able to inform you further in June.

Limited study/work availability on campus
Based on the deliberation we have with the government, health authorities and external specialists, we will decide on how many study and work spaces we can make available for students and staff members after 1 June. If allowed, we only expect a very controlled and limited number of work and study space to be available. We will update you as soon as we have more clarity.

Practical placement 
The Placement Office Team and the Practical Placement Core Team discussed multiple options for the students who are supposed to go on internship this August. The concerning students will receive more information before the weekend.

Renovation
In relation to the renovation of our campus at the Brusselselaan in The Hague, we are happy to confirm to you that the current situation does not affect the planning and execution of the renovation. Our temporary housing will be ready for use as planned after summer and according to the governmental measures and health protocols in place. In respect to the renovation of the campus, we are in discussion with the contractor to bring activities forward.
 

Update 23 April

Tuesday night, the Dutch authorities announced that most of the measures currently in place in The Netherlands to combat COVID-19 (coronavirus) will be extended until 20 May 2020.  
 
The Dutch Prime Minister announced the continuation of the intelligent lockdown with looser measures for children under the age of 12. Research shows that the probability that young kids spread the virus is low. Therefore, primary schools will partially re-open. The remaining current measures stay the same.  
 
The intelligent lockdown remains longer than we expected and hoped. We should prepare ourselves that this situation will take longer than expected. It is a continuous trade-off by our government between safeguarding health by testing, pressure on hospitals, pressure on public areas including public transport, and economic consequences. Our type of education will put more pressure on public transport and public areas. Thus, we need to prepare ourselves that this situation will take longer and that digital and distance education after 1 June might need to be continued.  
 
What is the impact of the announcement for universities of applied sciences?
 
The measures for higher education remain the same. During the week prior to 20 May, the authorities will communicate how to proceed after this date.  
 
While we prepare ourselves for a longer period of digital and distance education, we are in close contact with all Dutch universities of applied sciences and the Minister of Education. Large gatherings and events were prohibited until 1 June; this is extended until 1 September. Thus, this also has implications for all Dutch universities to start education on campuses. 
 
How do we prepare? 
In all decisions, the health and safety of our community is our main priority. The focus for the start of our presential education is to organise this in a way, that we adhere to the 1.5-meter distance rule, minimise potential study delay and maximise the learning experience. We are currently working on a plan of approach. We expect to finalise the plan of approach by the end of next week. 
 
In this process, we of course make sure to involve our students and colleagues. We will inform you by the end of week D1 (1 May) and organise Question & Answer sessions in week D2 (starting from 4 May). 
 

Update 24 March

Yesterday evening, the Dutch authorities announced new measures to prevent the virus from spreading. For higher education, the measure, closure until 6 April, has not changed. We will dive into what the new measures such as the prohibition of social gatherings until 1 June entail for our school. Below we would like to give you an update on the current situation, upcoming Q&A sessions and the importance to follow with online education.

Update current situation
We remind you that respecting all the measures enforced by the authorities, especially social distancing, is essential for slowing down the contagion. On this regard, we regret to inform you that yesterday we received the official confirmation that some of our students have been confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 (coronavirus). They are isolated, and thankfully they are doing well. According to the authorities, the peak of infected in the Netherlands is expected to take place the coming weeks. Therefore, we expect that additional students/employees will be tested positive on COVID-19. If this would be the case, please do not forget to let us know by filling this form. 

Q&A Sessions
The last weeks, we understand must have been overwhelming for many of you. Although, we shared a lot of information, we can fully understand that you still have questions and concerns you would like to share with us. For this reason, we organise live Questions & Answers sessions via Microsoft Teams in the coming days. Please keep an eye on your inbox for the invitation.

Important to continue your education online!
And, while having to deal with this new situation and all challenges it brings with it, our main priority is to cause as minimal disruption to your education as possible. Therefore, we want to stress (again) the absolute importance for students to still follow their courses online. We have started to build through our online learning. We are now preparing for Block D and the (alternative for the) written exams. We will keep you updated as soon as we have more information.
 

Update 25 March

On Monday, the Dutch authorities announced that all gatherings and events will be prohibited until 1 June. This measure has a severe impact on our daily lives and makes presential education impossible. We believe it is crucial to provide clarity on what this means for our students and staff members. As a result, we have decided that we will continue with online education until 1 June.

Therefore, Hotelschool The Hague campuses and Skotel The Hague and Amsterdam will remain closed at least until 1 June. We closely monitor the guidelines of the Dutch government and the RIVM. Should the national measures allow to offer education on campus, Hotelschool The Hague will investigate different options to implement this.

We thank you in advance for understanding that this decision has a numerous amount of implications, at different levels, and we are already working on options and solutions. Trust that we do our utmost to inform you as soon as we can update you.

Update 1 April

Yesterday evening, the Dutch authorities announced that all measures currently in place in The Netherlands to combat COVID-19 (coronavirus) will be extended until 28 April. These include: staying home as much as possible, keeping a distance of 1.5 metres from other people and avoiding all social activities and groups of people. During the week before 28 April, the authorities will assess if/what measures will need to be implemented after this date.

As communicated last week, Hotelschool The Hague will keep offering online education at least until 1 June. Please note that these measures were taken together with all Dutch universities of applied sciences in order to provide clarity to students and employees. Should the national measures allow to offer education on campus at an earlier date than 1 June, Hotelschool The Hague will explore which educational activities and/or assessments can take place on campus again.

The authorities urge everyone to stay home during the Easter weekend. We would like to stress the importance of this as the risk of infection is still very high. Be aware that compliance with the measures is crucial to flatten the curve. Together, we will get corona under control.

Update 20 March

Support measures for students
Yesterday, the Dutch government announced new measures to support students in light of the developments of the coronavirus. Please click here for the official announcement (only in Dutch). We are happy to see the government will support students in need. We will now dive into the specific consequences for our students and will share more information in a later stage. For your convenience, you can find the highlights below. 

Recommendation to Discontinue Programme (RDP)
Students who do not comply with the RDP, because they have been delayed by the coronavirus, receive a deferment. They will be given the opportunity to achieve the RDP standard in the following academic year. The Minister Van Engelshoven (Education) has agreed this with the Association of Universities (VSNU), the Association of Universities of Applied Sciences (VH) and student organisations ISO and LSVb. Students can then move on to the second year and are given the opportunity to meet the BSA standard in the academic year 2020-2021.

Attention to financial problems for (former) students
Students can also run into financial problems because their income from, for example, a side job is now disappearing, while the costs of, for example, the rent continues. The Education Executive Agency (DUO) will do everything in its ability to support students and will take their personal situation into account. Students can use the loan options at DUO and increase their loans. In addition, students can apply for tuition fee credit. Students can arrange this themselves via mijnDUO. If this is still insufficient, students can contact DUO for a customised solution.

Courtesy upon admission
The regular registration deadline for students (May 1) is postponed to June 1. This gives students who were unable to register in time due to the coronavirus an extra opportunity to still do so.

Travel abroad
Just like all Dutch people, students and employees are advised by the national government not to travel. 

Update 15 March

Additional measures Cabinet
This evening, the government has announced that the measures initially to be implemented until 1 April, now have been extended to 6 April. This means that Hotelschool The Hague campuses and Skotel The Hague and Amsterdam remain closed until 6 April. However, Hotelschool The Hague is committed to continue offering (online) education. 
  
Online education  
We officially start with online education as of Wednesday 18 March 2020.

  • Original time schedules are maintained. This way we keep clarity across courses, and students in different time zones can adapt.   
  • Some courses are ready to start with online education as of tomorrow. Please keep an eye on your inbox!   

Assessments  

  • All written exams for the remainder of block C cannot take place. We cannot offer online assessments for the individual written assessments (that normally would take place on campus in an exam room). We are working on scenarios to make it possible to catch up on these written exams later this academic year.  
  • All courses adhere to the deadlines as mentioned in the course syllabus as much as possible, and when realistic, for:  
    • Oral exams   
    • Written reports (group and individual reports)  
    • LYCar defences  
    • Presentations 

Students will be updated on the above deadlines and possible changes, via the core teams later this week.  

Update 13 March

No education at Hotelschool The Hague campuses
Thursday evening, the Dutch Minister of Health, Welfare and Sports (VWS) decided that education will no longer take place at the campuses of higher education in the Netherlands. This applies to both educational activities and exams with immediate effect until 1 April. 

Bachelor and master students

  • We do not offer both theoretical as well as practical education at the campuses in The Hague and Amsterdam until at least 1 April. 
  • During this period, the exams and LYCar defenses on campus are also cancelled. 
  • The Media Centre is not open for use on campus, but online available (including support).
  • Be aware that the campuses will only stay accessible for employees in order to organise alternative ways of education and to run vital functions of the organisation such as IT. 
  • In the coming days, we will inform you regarding alternative ways of education, (written and oral) exams and LYCar defences. Please make sure to keep track of your emails.
  • Tutoring for students currently on placement or internship continues digitally or via phone.  
  • Today until 15:00, campus The Hague and campus Amsterdam will only be open to collect your personal belongings. 

Skotel students
As the health of our students is our first priority, we request students in Skotel to go home to their parents, families or friends if possible. Please inform always the Instructor of the Reception regarding your departure. We can understand that for some of our students, this will be challenging. If this applies to you, then please contact the instructor for support, we will make sure all our students will be supported in the right way. 
 
Please keep track of your email!
As the situation is subject to change, we request you to monitor your inbox on a very regular basis. In the upcoming days, we will inform you about alternative ways to continue your study and courses. We will do everything we can to limit possible negative consequences. 

Events
All events organised by Hotelschool The Hague, both on and outside our premises, will be postponed or organised in an alternative way. This applies to events in the coming period up to 30 April. This also includes the (international) Selection Days and Open Days.

All those involved in Open Days and Selection Days will be contacted directly.

FAQ

We do our utmost best to inform everyone through our Frequently Asked Questions. Before sending an e-mail, it is advised to take a look at the FAQ first, on the right side of the page. Your question might be answered already. 

In case of any other questions, please do not hesitate to contact us via coronavirus@hotelschool.nl