Protect staff and students

Petition calling for fair funding and online learning

We note the spiralling crisis in higher education, with avoidable Covid-19 outbreaks on campuses affecting thousands of students and staff across the UK.

We are deeply concerned that the government and institutions have ignored the calls of the University and College Union, National Union of Students, the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) and Independent SAGE for the majority of learning to move online.

We believe that the pandemic has exposed deep-rooted flaws in how higher education is funded. The pressure on institutions to attract tuition fee income, combined with the government’s failure to stand behind the sector financially during this crisis, has contributed to the decision to push ahead with unnecessary face-to-face provision which threatens the physical and mental health of students, staff and local communities.

We need a better approach to funding which supports flexibility for students, security for staff, stability for the sector, and safety for all.

We call on the UK government to:

  1. immediately implement the SAGE recommendations and move to online learning where possible
  2. ensure no financial detriment to students who wish to give up their accommodation place during the pandemic
  3. provide a financial guarantee for universities against loss of income linked to the Covid-19 crisis
  4. provide additional funding for mental health support for both staff and students
  5. end tuition fees and move to a stable, long-term, direct funding model for higher education.

Current signatories: 6928

Protect staff and students

We note the spiralling crisis in higher education, with avoidable Covid-19 outbreaks on campuses affecting thousands of students and staff across the UK.

We are deeply concerned that the government and institutions have ignored the calls of the University and College Union, National Union of Students, the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) and Independent SAGE for the majority of learning to move online.

We believe that the pandemic has exposed deep-rooted flaws in how higher education is funded. The pressure on institutions to attract tuition fee income, combined with the government's failure to stand behind the sector financially during this crisis, has contributed to the decision to push ahead with unnecessary in-person provision which threatens the physical and mental health of students, staff and local communities.

We need a better approach to funding which supports flexibility for students, security for staff, stability for the sector, and safety for all.

We call on the UK government to:
1. immediately implement the SAGE recommendations and move to online learning where possible
2. ensure no financial detriment to students who wish to give up their accommodation place during the pandemic
3. provide a financial guarantee for universities against loss of income linked to the Covid-19 crisis
4. provide additional funding for mental health support for both staff and students
5. end tuition fees and move to a stable, long-term, direct funding model for higher education.

**your signature**

6,928 signatures

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