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Advice and Information

LONDON CAMPUS OPEN FOR ALL COURSES FROM SEPTEMBER 2020

Blended Learning On campus or online

Student Views The inside track

Virtual Classroom The new normal

Following UK Government advice, and in-line with social-distancing requirements, our London campus was successfully re-opened on the 6th July to offer students Studio Lab Time and to deliver a number of DJ courses.

From September onwards we expect to be able to deliver all courses on campus (subject to UK Government advice), with the exception of Singing which requires additional social distancing measures for safety - we will of course continue to offer Singing remotely. Other classes will likely need to alternate between on campus and off campus delivery initially. 

To ensure the safety of our students and staff whilst onsite we will be continuing with the following measures: 

  • Managed social-distancing measures including alternating weekly on/off campus schedules 
  • Regular antibacterial and antiviral "fogging" of our our buildings
  • Daily deep cleaning of all equipment within and all areas of our buildings 
  • Free hand sanitiser, plastic gloves and face coverings for those studying and working on site 
  • Compulsory temperature checks for all students, staff and visitors upon entering any of our buildings 

Whilst we are keen to get back to campus for all classes and activities, we will also continue to deliver all courses remotely (online) via our Virtual Classroom, offering a new blended learning approach to students who can't make it to campus or who would rather not travel.

Essentially, students will be able to learn on campus or online via the Virtual Classroom, or a combination of both. We will ensure that however and wherever they study, students will get the same support, attention and opportunities as on campus and that their educational experience and outcomes will not be affected as outlined in our Student Protection Plan.

In addition we will continue to offer a range of exclusive features and activities online as well as on campus, and our Student Support services will also continue to be available remotely.

With the start of term just around the corner, we wanted to get in touch and make sure that you have everything you need. Whether you are new to Point Blank or a current student, this email contains essential information for your studies next term, so make sure you read it all! 😊
On campus and virtual Studio Lab Time
Induction & Welcome Week 
Software & hardware requirements
Virtual modules and student dashboard
Point Blank exclusive features
BACK TO SCHOOL: STUDIO LAB TIME BACK ON CAMPUS!
As you may know, we’re reopening our Orsman Road building this term to offer Studio Lab Time. We know how important it is for you to get up close and personal with our equipment so, following the latest advice, we are introducing the following to keep you safe on site:
Managed social-distancing
Regular antibacterial and antiviral “fogging” 
Daily deep cleaning of the building
Free hand sanitiser, gloves and masks (please bring your own if possible)
Temperature checks on entering the building
The Orsman Road building will be open from 6 July from 9.30am - 6.30pm initially. Booking the studios will work as usual and bookings can be made via the VLE.
If you can’t make it to campus or would rather not travel, don’t worry. You can access Studio Lab Time remotely as well, so whether you choose to come into campus or stay at home for your practice time, you’ll be getting all the support you need.
Find out more about Studio Lab Time HERE.
READY, SET, STUDY: INDUCTION & WELCOME WEEK
As you are aware, we will be delivering our lectures and added value services virtually for the July term (apart from Studio Lab Time - see above). Getting set up properly for the first couple of weeks of term is critical to doing well on your course and we’re here to help you do just that.
Induction Events (new students only)    
New students will be invited to attend a virtual induction session where you will be able to learn more about how the School works and what services, support and additional opportunities you can expect from Point Blank Music School. 
New students will also be invited to attend a VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) and Virtual Classroom webinar where you can learn how our VLE and virtual classroom works and pick up tips and advice for making your learning experience as easy and enjoyable as possible. 
You’ll be sent a separate email invitation for these sessions – look out for them in your inbox.
Welcome Week (all students)
The School will also be hosting a wide range of extra-curricular virtual events and activities for all students during the first two weeks of term. From daily listening and track feedback sessions, and industry and artist masterclasses, to production skills and music workshops, social events and live streamed DJ sets – there will be something you’ll love happening every day. 
Look out for the full Welcome Week event schedule in future emails and on the VLE. 
THE RIGHT STUFF: SOFTWARE & HARDWARE UPDATES
It’s important to ensure that you have the right equipment and software before you start the term. You can check the list of requirements for each module HERE, and for information about trial versions, system requirements and alternative software visit this VLE page.
We are working with partners to provide you with as much free software as possible. If you do not have or are unable to purchase the software or hardware required to take a module, it is important that you tell us as soon as possible so that we can make alternative arrangements. 
Remember, if you are a higher education student, we can’t accept lack of software as an extenuating circumstance for an assessment extension so make sure you let us know ASAP so that we can help provide an alternative solution.
Below are some useful updates on free or discounted software and hardware you may need:
Logic Pro and Ableton Live 90 day free trial: If you haven’t taken advantage of this already then you will be able to download a fully functional 90 day free trial. For those of you who have taken advantage for Ableton, we are currently in discussion and it’s likely this trial can be extended for the July term. If you are unable to purchase Ableton and have already used the free trial, then please let us know as soon as possible for us to make arrangements for you.
Native Instruments Komplete: If you have taken advantage of the temporary license for this already then we’re happy to announce that the license has been extended until the end of the July term. Please DO NOT uninstall any plugins before then, as you may lose them. We are currently in discussion to see if NI can provide more temporary licenses for students studying Sound Design and Advanced Sound Design in this term.
Pro Tools: We are also in discussion with AVID about temporary Pro Tools licenses for this term which would be provided at a heavily discounted rate. We will keep you posted as soon as we can, but you may need to purchase this for particular modules. 
Waves– We’re delighted to announce that Waves will be giving all current PB London students access to their H-Comp Hybrid Compressor plug in, this is particularly useful for students studying Mixing and Mastering. We’ll let you know how to claim the plugin soon.
Izotope – For those studying Mastering next term, we are in discussion with Izotope to see if we can get access to their mastering suite. Again, we will keep you posted on this. 
West End DJ- Point Blank students can get a 10% discount on all equipment. Additionally, for our July DJ students they are offering a 15% discount on the Pioneer DDJ200 and DDJ400 DJ controllers.
Hardware: You need to make sure that your computer is powerful enough to support virtual learning via Zoom and the software required for your course. We also recommend that you invest in a keyboard controller if you are studying a production related module. 
If you’re interested in upgrading your home studio then don’t be afraid to look at second-hand products. There’s a ton of good deals on websites like eBay where you can pick up some kit to support your learning and make the most of your course. 
If you are taking advantage of free trials then we recommend that you purchase your required software as soon as possible if you haven’t done so already. Having this available throughout your studies at home will be essential to you successfully completing your course.
Don’t forget, we can offer you 50% off Ableton Liveand NI Kompleteif you would like to purchase them. You can find out about all of our exclusive discounts HERE.
If you don’t have or cannot purchase the required software or hardware to take your course then you must contact us as soon as possible, we’re here to help find a solution. 
NEW AND IMPROVED: NEW MODULES & NEW DASHBOARD
In addition to the modules we currently teach virtually, we are pleased to announce that we are now able to deliver a number of additional modules via the Virtual Classroom, including:
Essential DJ Skills 
Creative DJ Skills 
Advanced DJ Skills 
Sound Engineering 
Advanced Recording & Mixing 
Introduction to DJ Techniques 
The learning outcomes for these modules have been adjusted so that they can be studied effectively from home, but some modules will require additional specialist equipment and software so please make sure you have read through the module requirements HERE.
We’re aware that an important aspect for students is getting hands on with our equipment, so we will also be hosting specialist workshops when we are able to return to campus fully for students studying the modules above to make sure you get the learning experience you want. 
We have also updated our VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) Student Dashboard. Following positive feedback on the new and improved dashboard, we will be switching over to the enhanced version for all students from the start of this term. 
Don’t worry if you’re new to Point Blank, you’ll love our updated VLE and Dashboards. 
GIVING YOU MORE: MORE THAN JUST A COURSE
Finally, we are working hard to ensure that, as far as possible, you experience the same exceptional student life in the virtual world as you would on campus, and offer a range of services and support to ensure that you get the most out of studying with us: 
Weekly interactive virtual lectures accessed from home 
Regular virtual 1-2-1s with our industry-leading lecturers
Studio Lab Time support from our expert Studio Assistants
On campus Studio Lab Time sessions (for those that want them)
Ongoing industry masterclasses, workshops, socials and showcases
Professional careers and employability support, advice and guidance  
Expert, well connected, A&R mentoring, development and contract advice
Exclusive offers, deals, discounts and opportunities from the industry  
Friendly and discreet wellbeing, counselling and student support services 
Daily opportunities to share your music, get feedback and get signed  
Find out more about all the exclusive features and services we offer HERE. As we continue delivering our courses virtually, students can learn remotely from home, with classes and 121s delivered online through our state-of-the-art e-learning platform. Fortunately, we are experienced in running a highly effective and successful Online School and have processes and procedures in place to ensure the smooth operating of the School during this time.

Current students should contact our Student Services team with any questions: support[at]pointblankmusicschool.com.

Prospective students should contact our Admissions team: admissions[at]pointblankmusicschool.com.

Our LA campus will remain closed for the time-being and will be delivering all courses via the Virtual Classroom until otherwise advised by the relevant authority. Our campus in Ibiza will re-open for the summer in late August to deliver DJ and Production courses. 

Our School in China is currently open (subject to social-distancing), while our campus in Mumbai is currently closed awaiting further government guidelines. Services for our Online School remain unaffected and continue as normal. 

To stay updated, we recommend visiting the BBC Coronavirus news feed and WHO (World Health Organisation) website.

Applicant Advice

Point Blank remains absolutely determined that no applicant will be disadvantaged by the current crisis. We are currently reviewing all of our admissions processes and requirements in the light of the cancellation of exams to limit the impact on our future students, including looking at different ways to assess your application beyond results.

The Government is also introducing new guidance on how students will be graded this year and more details will be available shortly. Once these details are published, we will contact all affected applicants to notify them of our updated admissions process for admission from September 2020. 

For those of you still yet to apply regardless of whether your grades are affected by the Coronavirus outbreak, we encourage you to do so as soon as possible as our places are filling up fast. 

Our Admissions team are open as usual and are on hand to give you all the support you need and answer any questions you might have. In the meantime, please click here for more information on our normal entry requirements. 

While there is not currently a fixed date when we will be able to fully reopen our campuses, the situation is not permanent, and we are looking forward to welcoming our new students on campus at Point Blank as soon as possible.

Prospective students and those due to join us in next term should contact our Admissions team with any questions or concerns by emailing admissions@pointblankmusicschool.com or calling us on 020 7729 4884.

Health Advice

We encourage you to take the necessary precautions to protect yourself from the Coronavirus. Please follow the latest government advice on staying healthy.

Reduce the risk of spreading the virus:

  • Stay at home as much as possible
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
  • Throw all used tissues in the bin as soon as you have used them
  • Wash your hands thoroughly after coughing and sneezing

Reduce the risk of catching the virus:

  • Stay at home as much as possible 
  • Wash your hands with soap and water frequently
  • Use a hand sanitizer gel and use anti-bacterial wipes
  • Don’t touch your nose, eyes, or mouth if your hands are not clean

If you are experiencing symptoms or are concerned that you may have picked up the virus, please call NHS 111 for urgent medical advice and support.

Please DO NOT come into the School, or go to a GP surgery, pharmacy or hospital. Stay at home and avoid close contact with other people (where possible) until you have the all clear.

For the latest advice and information visit please the Public Health England, the NHS and the World Health Organisation.

Visa Advice

Advice from the Home Office

Some Tier 4 students or Tier 2/5 employees may be prevented from attending their studies or employment due to illness, the need to serve a period of quarantine or the inability to travel due to travel restrictions caused by coronavirus.

Sponsors do not need to report student or employee absences related to coronavirus which they have authorised.

Sponsors do not need to withdraw sponsorship if they consider there are exceptional circumstances when:

 A student will be unable to attend for more than 60 days

• An employee is absent from work without pay for four weeks or more

Decisions on whether to withdraw a student from their studies or terminate an employment are for sponsors to make.

The Home Office recognises the current situation is exceptional and will not take any compliance action against students or employees who are unable to attend their studies/work due to the coronavirus outbreak, or against sponsors which authorise absences and continue to sponsor students or employees despite absences for this reason.

The Home Office will keep this under review, especially if the length of absences means a potential repeat of period of studies become necessary.

General Support 

For general support students should contact their institution’s wellbeing support services or phone UKCISA’s Student Advice Line on +44 20 7788 9214 (1–4pm UK time, Monday–Friday).

If you are unable to attend classes because you are in an affected area or are following advice from Public Health England, this will be considered an authorised absence, and it should not affect your visa in most cases.

You need to contact support[at]pointblankmusicschool.com to tell them that you are absent and the reason why, as well as an expected return date (if you know it). They will update your attendance record to show that your absence is authorised.

We do not anticipate visa implications for most Tier 4 students with quarantine or travel restrictions. But if you will be absent from study for more than 60 days (including any absences for other reasons before the quarantine/travel restriction began), you may need specific advice. 

For immigration support, please call the Coronavirus Immigration Helpline on 0800 678 1767 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm) or email CIH[at]homeoffice.gov.uk

FAQs

Is Point Blank open?

Our London campus is open for Studio Lab Time and DJ Courses (subject to social-distancing measures). All other courses and activities will continue to be delivered remotely until we can fully return to campus in September (subject to UK Government advice).

Our School in China is also open (subject to social-distancing measures). Our schools in Mumbai and Ibiza are currently closed, however our School in Ibiza will re-open in late August to deliver DJ and Production courses. Our LA campus is currently closed, but the LA School itself is open and is delivering all courses remotely via the Virtual Classroom.   

What precautions is Point Blank taking?
Point Blank’s Executive Team is overseeing and monitoring the situation. We have been meeting regularly to assess the impact and to determine appropriate actions. Where we are delivering teaching and services on campus we are following strict social-distancing measures and monitoring the latest advice and guidelines. For both virtual and on site delivery we will be consulting with our students, gathering their feedback and working with them to ensure their safety and maintain an outstanding student experience.  

What is the risk to students and staff?
As the situation develops we encourage everyone not to panic, but to take the necessary precautions to protect themselves from the virus by following the advice issued by the NHS, Public Health England and the WHO. If social-distancing guidelines are followed and everyone looks after each other the risk for on campus activities is minimal. 

Should students and staff continue to attend lectures and other teaching activities?
As outlined above, most of our teaching is being delivered remotely currently, so there is no need to come on to campus. You should attend your lectures and so on as normal remotely from home.

Should you wish to come on to campus to use our studio spaces for Studio Lab Time or for DJ modules and courses, you will need to ensure that you are well and showing no symptoms of Covid-19 / the Coronavirus and must follow our social-distancing guides and procedures. 

What should I do if I can not attend online classes due to self-isolation or illness? 

For international students who are unable to attend classes because they are in an affected area or are following advice from Public Health England, given the situation, this will be considered an authorised absence, and it should not affect your visa Equally, for UK students who need to self-isolate or become ill, this will also be treated as authorised absence. We will support you in minimising any impact any absence might have on your academic progress. If necessary, we can assist you in applying for extenuation from any imminent deadlines. All student absences should be reported to support[at]pointblankmusicschool.com in the first instance. Staff should contact their Line Manager in the first instance as usual. 

Should students or staff with underlying health conditions take additional precautions?
We recommend that any students or staff, with underlying health conditions, who have any personal concerns contact their GP, or NHS 111, for advice on prolonged "shielding".

Should students and staff wear masks?
Yes. When using public transport, or in enclosed spaces on campus we suggest that everyone wears a face covering of some kind rot help protect against the transmission of infected droplets to venerable areas such as the mouth, nose and eyes. If you are in any doubt, follow the latest Government advice, or contact our support team for more information. 

Who should students and staff contact if they are feeling unwell?
In the first instance, students should call their GP or NHS 111 for advice, but SHOULD NOT  attend their GP practice or NHS drop-in centre in person without first seeking advice.

Contact us