Kingston University is planning a phased return to on-campus teaching from March 8, in line with Boris Johnson’s plans to ease lockdown restrictions.
Practical courses will be prioritised in the first phase. University courses have been mostly online since January and access to campus restricted.
The government is encouraging students to take twice-weekly lateral flow tests to help catch asymptomatic cases of Covid-19.
Vice-Chancellor, Professor Steven Spier said: “If you come to campus weekly, or if you live in halls, you should get tested regularly.”
He highlighted that: “Tests are available throughout the week at the testing centre on the Penryhn Road campus.”
The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, said: “Students should continue their studies remotely until March 8 at the earliest.”
However, some students who finish classes in March see no need to return to campus.
Biomedical Science student Juann Rocha said: “I feel there is no need to go back to face-to-face in March. Weeks of lectures left, at least for me, I am already copying with online learning.”
Karen Nwachukwu, a Pharmaceutical Science student, said: “We are about to finish the academic year. Many international students have returned to their country due to this situation.”
She continued: “Knowing most of our lectures were online, the government could have given us some of our tuition fees back as we are not fully gaining and learning from our education.”
Simran Nayee, a Human Nutrition student, expressed similar concerns: “Not once have the government mentioned university students at all. We were all lost and still are and hence we need our money back for what we are paying as we are not getting what we should be getting.”
As the academic year comes to an end soon students want to make the most of it and get the best experience possible.
The Vice-Chancellor Professor Steven Spier in an email to students, restated the university’s commitment to plans that “prioritised health and wellbeing alongside meeting our expectations of a comparable learning experience, high-quality engagement and personalised support.”
He added: “I’m hopeful we can return to some level of normality over the coming months, and provide the more open and collaborative way of studying that Kingston is so proud of.”