The light at the end of the tunnel can be seen and is within reach now. However, for university students, confusion is ensuing about when they will be getting the education that their money demanded. Higher education has gone virtual since the announcement of lockdown in March of last year, with the rare face to face class in the first term of this year. This is in stark contrast to schools, which have missed only 8 weeks of school this academic year. This begs the question: how can universities safely facilitate the return of students to their premises?


The chief executive of the Russell Group, Dr Bradshaw, urged universities to consider allowing students back, especially those with practical elements to their course on the 12th of April. Nevertheless, rumours alongside government guidelines state that it could be as late as 17th May that students are even allowed back on campus. This date is far from a guarantee and even with them being allowed back on campus; students are rightly afraid that it will mimic proceedings of the first term where face to face classes were minimal. 


What steps can now be taken?


The obvious answer to this question involves a widespread testing programme, similar to the one in schools currently to limit communal spread of the virus. But this may take a considerable amount of time to put in place and with uncertainty and apprehension growing with millions of pounds at stake, answers from the government are eagerly awaited.