Queens’ and Churchill are the next colleges to ask students to go home due to COVID-19 concerns

This follows Trinity’s decision to send students home two days ago

In an email sent out by Queens’ College today (15th March), UK students living in college accommodation have been asked to vacate by 18th March (the end of normal residence) at the very latest, even if they have been given ‘excess residence’. Queens’ has also urged overseas students to travel home as soon as possible- unless special circumstances mean that they cannot.

Queens’ has justified this decision by highlighting that the government, on 12th March, changed the phase from ‘contain’ to ‘delay’. Then, speaking in terms of the University’s stance, the College reveals that the University is currently in the ‘amber phase’ and that ‘when it moves to red, normal operations will cease’ in both the University and College.

The College does not guarantee that students self-isolating in college will be able to receive care or have meals delivered.

In light of the likelihood of staff also falling ill, the College has said that they will not have the resources available provide the support that they would be able to otherwise, and have argued that students would be better looked after by their families. Loneliness has also been noted as a potential consequence of self-isolation.

The College has advised students to leave with all their belongings.

Queens’ appears to make clear that all decisions and answers are subject to change as the government and University’s stances also change.

In comparison, Churchill College’s Senior Tutor has sent out an email to its students decoding the ‘carefully worded message’ sent out to all students by the University. He highlights that the earlier position that some students should remain in Cambridge over Easter instead of going home has ‘now been revised.’

Churchill anticipates that some students will have to stay in college.

The Senior Tutor ‘actively encourages’ students to go home . Both Colleges have suggested that students should take all their belongings with them when they leave due to the possibility that they may be unable to return to College.

Queens’ College and Churchill College have been contacted for comment.

Cover photo credit: Oxyman, David Gruar