The government has laid out its guidance for the end of term amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
This guidance concerns students returning home for the Christmas break in a safe manner, enabling them to see their families while limiting the transmission of COVID-19 as far as possible.
After the current four-week national lockdown ends, Falmouth University and the University of Exeter, working with the government’s guidance, will observe a “student travel window” between 3-9 December.
During this period, students, including international students (subject to travel restrictions), can travel home as long as they are not isolating.
Students not returning home over Christmas will be supported and campus facilities such as libraries and study spaces will be available throughout the break. On-campus accommodation, with catering and support services, will remain available to those wishing to stay.
While the designated period to travel home is advisory, the government strongly recommends that all students wishing to return home do so during the “travel window”. Students are advised to follow the government’s passenger travel guidance.
To support this “travel window”, all teaching will take place online from 4 December until the end of term, apart from Exeter “teaching activities requiring specialist spaces or facilities where online provision is not possible”. After 8 December, all teaching will take place online.
Additionally, from 30 November, all those wanting a COVID-19 test before going home will be able to get one. Students are encouraged to get tested if they wish “to give reassurance to those they are travelling to be with”.
Social, extra-curricular, or sporting activities will not be able to restart when the national lockdown ends on 2 December.
As for how Falmouth and Exeter students will return to campus in the spring term, the universities are waiting for further guidance from the government.
The number of COVID-19 cases linked to Penryn Campus remains low.