Coronavirus Scotland: All students banned from returning home under new rules

Grant Boone
September 26, 2020

And those who have repeatedly violated the coronavirus guideline may be expelled from the university under the new rules amid much concern since the start of their term. All students are also required to download the Protect Scotland tracing app.

The guidance says: "We will take a strict "Yellow Card/Red Card" approach to breaches of student discipline that put students and others at risk".

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Laura Rettie, Vice President of education consultancy, Studee said, "The prospect of students being told they won't be allowed home to their families feels exceptionally draconian".

"We expect that we're going to be stretched early on, and so as soon as we've worked through the priority for us which is making sure we can get testing for our students and our employees, we'll be looking at options for expanding that early on".

When asked about sex with new partners, she said: "There are limits to what I'm going to say to students about the regulation of their intimate private lives".

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'We need every student across Scotland to help us stop the spread of the virus'.

"Students have done everything they have been asked to do during this pandemic, and are now returning to university campuses in accordance with Government advice".

However additional demands have been placed on university students after a number of institutions have reported a high number of positive cases.

"That means ensuring that all campuses are Covid-secure, with readily available access to testing for staff and students".

She said she was "so heart sorry" for students in university accommodation and said they were not to blame for the virus spreading.

A considerable number of students tested positive after the outbreak of Covid-19 in residential halls
A considerable number of students tested positive after the outbreak of Covid-19 in residential halls

Nicola Sturgeon, Scotland's first minister, tweeted a message to students on Thursday, saying she was sorry coronavirus was making a "special time" for them "so tough".

She said: "I'm going to be frank, that's a hard balancing act, because if you go home after you've been asked to self-isolate that may have implications for your family, who then also may be asked to self-isolate if you test positive".

His comments come as freshers in Scotland have been told not to go to bars and restaurants as hundreds of students have been forced to self-isolate at halls of residence after Covid-19 outbreaks.

Universities will increase the staff presence in student accommodation, to be vigilant against any breaches of guidance and also to offer welfare and practical support to students who are experiencing isolation.

The meeting was chaired by the university principal as well as Higher Education Minister Richard Lochhead.

The new rules say that all universities will "make absolutely clear to students that there must be no parties, and no socialising outside their households".

"We don't rule out anything".

He said: "This is an ask of the student population of Scotland from universities".

A total of 120 cases of coronavirus have been identified in an outbreak at Edinburgh Napier University.

Thousands of students returned to Manchester in September to begin studies.

"UCU argues that remote and online work for universities should be done in line with other workplaces by default".

It comes as Health Secretary Matt Hancock suggested students could be stuck at universities over the Christmas break.

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