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Scottish Universities to Stagger Returns

Posted by Richard Ward in , ,

Image courtesy of Flickr, Creative Commons

Universities in Scotland will stagger the return of students to campuses over at least six weeks, with a package of measures being introduced to minimise the spread of Covid-19.

Whilst there will be some exceptions, undergraduates should plan to restart their studies at home and only return to campuses and term-time accommodation when notified to do so by their universities.

When students do return to their university accommodation, they will be offered lateral flow Covid-19 tests. All students are also being asked to restrict their social interactions for two weeks before they return to university and for the same length of time after they get there.

Other measures for Term 2 include:

- any student who has remained in university and other accommodation during the holiday, can continue to do so, whilst observing the relevant levels restrictions

- universities and other student accommodation providers should plan for how best to manage shared accommodation in ways that reduce the risk of transmission of the virus between students and between households, drawing on lessons learned from the autumn term

- universities and providers should offer additional support for any students who may have to self-isolate upon their return

Commenting on the measures, Further and Higher Education Minister Richard Lochhead said: "The Scottish Government, our colleges and our universities have a shared priority to ensure transmission of the coronavirus is minimised for the safety of all in our community."

"We also wish to see students have a positive educational experience in the coming spring term, including a blend of digital and in-person provision."

"The spread of the virus is, however, uncertain and prevalence is stubbornly high in some areas. So we are proposing these arrangements for the forthcoming term to ensure a safe return to college and university for students, staff and wider communities, building on the positive work done by colleges and universities based on the experience of the first term."