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Coronavirus Covid-19 Updates

Information and advice following the global coronavirus outbreak

The safety of our staff and students is the number one priority for the University.

 

We took the decision to move all face-to-face teaching online from Monday 16 March and following the Prime Minister's announcement on 23 March, all University academic buildings are now closed. Halls of Residence remain open for those students who are unable to return home.

 

We are working hard to ensure we can continue to deliver our operations in the best interests of our staff, students and partners, as well as the local community. We are monitoring the situation closely and we are endeavouring to provide as much advice, care and support as we can to our University community. 

 

The University is working with Public Health England who are taking the lead nationally and we are taking direction from them in all aspects of this situation.

 

All relevant public health information, including regular updates, can be found on the Government's Coronavirus website and on the Student Portal and Staff Intranet

 

We will continue to provide updates as and when we have them on this page.  

 

Answers to questions you may have are provided below.  

When will the next academic year start?

The new academic year will start in September as planned. New students will be welcomed from Monday 21st September with continuing students starting their teaching from Monday 28th September.

What action is the University taking?

We took the decision to move all face-to-face teaching online from Monday 16 March and following the Prime Minister's announcement on 23 March, all academic buildings are now closed. All accommodation buildings will remain open.

We are working hard to ensure we can continue to deliver our operations in the best interests of our staff, students and partners, as well as the local community. We are following all PHE advice and guidance and we are communicating regularly with our staff and students. 

A small group, led by University Executive, and supported by Assistant Director Health, Safety and Sustainability, Head of Student Life and Wellbeing and the Head of Student Progress and Ask4Help, are ensuring coordination of all relevant activities, in liaison with PHE. 

Our Student Portal and staff intranet are being updated continuously with the latest guidance, information and answers to questions you may have. This website has also been developed to share details with parents, applicants and members of the public. Students should visit the Student Portal for the latest information while staff should visit the staff intranet.

We are monitoring the situation closely and we will continue to provide advice and support as it becomes available to our University community. 

Is the University open?

Following the latest update by the Government, all buildings - including libraries, Digital Commons and learning zones at both at City and Coach Lane - are now closed.

The only exceptions are:

  • The Security Office in Trinity Building will remain open. A limited service will be provided in the Mailroom.
  • Access to Pandon Building for essential maintenance and IT provision will be through arrangement with Security.
  • All accommodation buildings will continue to operate as normal, with continued catering provision in Claude Gibb. Residents will be encouraged to use the provision on a takeaway basis.

How are you ensuring that the correct Health and Safety guidance is in place for those colleagues who need to work on Campus?

The Health, Safety and Wellbeing of our staff and students is the number one priority for the University and in line with legislative requirements and Government guidance, overarching risk assessments have been completed in supporting colleagues when returning to Campus. You can view them here and here.

I am a current applicant and due to start my course soon. How will I be affected?

We are working quickly to determine what the changes to UK-wide examinations will mean for applicants. We will be sharing all updates specific to current applicants here.

Has the University cancelled any events, open days or activities?

Following the government announcement on 23 March, the University and its academic buildings, facilities and Students' Union are closed until further notice. We will share details of future events and activities as soon as we are able.

We know how important it is to be able to make the most informed decision about which university to choose and we are working on a series of virtual events and information for applicants and offer holders. You can read more about these here.

Campus tours and organised school/college visits to the University are also postponed until further notice.

My son or daughter is studying at the University. What advice is there for parents?

This web page has been developed to answer questions that parents, partners and members of the public may have in relation to the University. Please be assured that all students will be receiving regular updates on the latest developments via the Student Portal and their University email. We ask you to encourage them to check these channels regularly.

We are also making regular updates to this site and our social media channels to ensure any new developments are reflected and communicated quickly.

I am due to travel to the UK to attend my course or work but I am unable. What should I do?

All classroom-based teaching and learning activity is being delivered online. You should access learning materials through Blackboard. If you are concerned about any other aspect of your learning please contact us through the Student Portal and we will discuss how you can get the support you need.

If you are about to begin your course you may find these FAQs for applicants to be useful.

If you are a staff member, please contact your Line Manager who will be able to discuss next steps with you.

Advice for staff who have specific questions about working arrangements

We are sharing advice for colleagues who may have questions about working arrangements on the staff intranet, which is being updated daily and in line with the latest government guidance. We encourage all staff to check the intranet for the latest advice and to speak to their line manager about any queries they may have.

I'm a member of staff due to travel internationally for work, what should I do?

For the foreseeable future all non-essential UK and international travel has been stopped. 

On this basis, all travel will now require approval from a Faculty Pro Vice-Chancellor or Service Director and completion of an appropriate risk assessment. Detail of the risk assessment process is on the Staff Intranet.

We ask that colleagues find alternative ways to conduct University business, for instance by phone or video conference. It is worth noting that many of our partners across the sector and externally are taking the same approach.

 

I'm worried about my tier-4 visa if I self-isolate or go back to my home country. Who can I ask?

The government has published new guidance on immigration provisions made by the Home Office for individuals in the UK who are unable to return to their home country. The guidance states that most people in the UK whose immigration status is affected by the coronavirus outbreak will get an automatic extension of their visa until 31 July 2020. 

It also provides details of the Coronavirus Immigration Helpline: Telephone: 0800 678 1767 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm, calls are free of charge). Email: CIH@homeoffice.gov.uk 

If you have any further concerns about your visa, please contact Ask4Help via the Student Portal.


What is the situation for students currently on, or about to begin, placements in UK?

There are specific types of guidance for students depending on their type of placement, for example, for those working in NHS Trusts. Details of these will be sent to students and added to the Student Portal. Government guidelines have been changing on a regular basis so we encourage students to keep checking their University emails and the Student Portal.

We recognise that some placements may close; start later or finish earlier than planned. Some have already been closed. Should this happen, please contact us via the Student Portal as soon as possible. In this situation we will work with academic staff to accommodate your return to study where we can. Arrangements will be made on an individual basis.

London Campus

We have created specific information for our London Campus students which you can find here.


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