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Watermeyer expresses concerns over university campus re-openings

Professor Richard Watermeyer, School of Education

14 September 2020

With infection rates increasing and online teaching well established, why risk everyone’s health by reopening, asks the School of Education’s Professor Richard Watermeyer.

Across the UK, universities are preparing to welcome students to campus for the new academic term. The University of Bristol, along with other universities, have implemented ‘blended learning’, a mix of face-to-face teaching in small group classes, as well as online teaching sessions.

However the School of Education’s Professor Richard Watermeyer, discusses why university campuses should not be re-opening especially at a time of rising infection rates, localised lock-downs and the possibility of national lock-down.

Professor Richard Watermeyer's article, “Breaking promises on campus reopening is the least bad option” has been published in The Times Higher Education (on the 14 September 2020).

In the article, Watermeyer argues that universities are asked the impossible: to guarantee a “COVID secure” place for all staff and students. With the influx of students from innumerable national and international localities into university towns and cities, Watermeyer says this will only exacerbate the aggressive escalation of new COVID-19 infection cases. Therefore, online teaching must be universities’ default position, particularly given that infection rates among those aged 17-21 is increasing. 

You can access the article here.

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