Home UK News Over 1,000 students at Newcastle University test positive in a week

Over 1,000 students at Newcastle University test positive in a week

This comes on top of the 770 positive tests among students at neighbouring Northumbria University announced on Friday

Over 1,000 students at Newcastle University have tested positive for COVID-19 over the past week. Twelve members of staff among the university’s 6,500 employees have also had a positive test result for the coronavirus.

A spokeswoman said “the overwhelming majority of cases” were from “social and residential settings”.

This comes on top of the 770 positive tests among students at neighbouring Northumbria University announced on Friday.

This comes after Nottingham City Council has been urging people within the city to follow stricter guidelines as the number of COVID-19 cases at universities within the region continues to rise.

Both of the universities have said that they will now be switching to online only teaching for at least three weeks, unless in-person classes are essential.

The spokeswoman added: “We expected to see cases rise in light of the increase in cases both locally and nationally and all HE institutions have to manage this on an ongoing basis.

“We feel confident that we have appropriate measures in place to protect us all while we are on campus and to reduce the potential for transmission in our community.”

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One lecturer, who asked not to be named, said: “I feel heartily sorry for the students.”

“They’ve essentially had no choice but to come to university, and sit in their rented accommodation, often rented from the university, and stew.”

“I suspect not all but many are getting nothing, and probably less, out of their uni experience than they would in the relative safety of their homes.”

The lecturer said it was “sheer lunacy” to bring students back, and that “a lot of staff are angry about it”.

This comes after Boris Johnson is expected to bring in tough new COVID-19 restrictions next week for pubs within northern England, which could include shutting them down altogether in the cities of Liverpool, Manchester and Newcastle.

Meanwhile, Leeds University has said that 555 of their students, as well as three members of staff had tested positive between the 28th of September and the 4th of October.

Professor Simone Buitendijk, the vice chancellor, said: “We are acutely aware that behind each number is an individual with their own needs and concerns, and ensuring the safety, health and wellbeing of everyone is our absolute priority.”

Manchester’s two main universities, Manchester University and Manchester Metropolitan University, have now also suspended all in-person teaching for the rest of October.

In a joint statement, both of the universities said to the Manchester Evening News that they met with the public health authorities, as well as Manchester City Council after a “significant increase in the number of COVID cases across the city of Manchester”.

Durham University has its asked students living within two colleges to remain on their campus for the next week after a sharp increase in cases of the coronavirus in two of its colleges, with about 100 of its students out of 800 testing positive for COVID-19.

Eve Cooper
Eve Cooper
I've been writing articles and stories for as long as I can remember and in the past few years I've had the fortune of turning that love & passion for writing into my job 🙂

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