Nov 12 2020

The following update has been shared with students this morning:

On the news yesterday you may have heard about a Government announcement from the Department for Education on a student travel window, and on Tuesday you may have also heard about Covid-19 testing before Christmas. You can read more detailed information from the government here.  

We are now working on plans in response to both announcements.  

What we do know 

Teaching, travel and campus  

  • The Government has asked universities to move teaching to online only from 9 December (detail here), and can direct us to do this if necessary. Campus will remain open, including facilities like the Library. If you need to remain in your accommodation to complete your studies for the term you will be able to do that
  • We are looking into how we can support the Government’s travel window which has been announced as being from 3 to 9 December. As part of this planning, we will consider how to support leaving your accommodation in a socially distanced way if you are being collected from campus by a parent or supporter
  • Students using public transport to return home are being reminded of the Government advice on travel; to wash hands, use face coverings, maintain social distancing and to travel outside peak times
  • We know that some students will remain on campus throughout the Christmas period and commuting students are encouraged to continue to use campus facilities. We will be supporting students this Christmas with a range of services remaining open including the Library, support and welfare services
  • Face-to-face teaching continues at this time. You should continue to attend face-to-face, on campus, sessions throughout the lockdown period which is scheduled to end on 2 December. We will provide more information on testing and travel plans by then.

What about next term? 

  • We are looking forward to welcoming everyone back to campus for the start of next term (11 January 2021) to continue with face-to-face, on campus teaching and learning support in addition to online activity. 

Testing 

  • The local testing unit remains on campus for anybody who has symptoms. Anybody showing symptoms should continue to book a test 

  • The Government has committed to supporting testing for all students who want it, even if they don’t have symptoms using a quick, ‘lateral flow’ test 

  • The rollout across the country is beginning soon, but we don’t yet have a confirmed timetable for our allocation   

  • Once we have these details, we will update you on how you can get tested and we will consider how such testing can best be used to protect all our students and staff 

  • We will continue to support students who have a positive Covid-19 test.   

What we don’t yet know  

  • We don’t know if we will be among the universities who will be allocated lateral flow testing.   

What you can do now 

  • Focus on your studies and make the most of your face-to-face learning opportunities  

  • Use our campus study spaces  

  • Continue to play your part; washing your hands, wearing a face covering and following social distancing – it’s more important than ever that we control the spread of coronavirus and have a successful rest of this term 

  • Follow the restrictions in place in relation to the lockdown which began on 5 November and is scheduled to end on 2 December.