Professor Julia Buckingham, president of Universities UK, said she was “really concerned” about the “50 percent” of students who learn remotely due to the Covid rules. University students taking practical courses, who need specialized facilities, began to resume face-to-face teaching on March 8. But there are fears that the government will delay the final phase of returns from April 12 to May 17.
The UK, which represents the vice-chancellors, has urged the government to allow students to return to campus as soon as possible after Easter.
He warned ministers not to take “student resilience for granted”.
Professor Buckingham said: “I am really concerned about the mental health and well-being of students and also very concerned about the personal development of students, which largely depends on human face-to-face interactions.”
She added that universities were “very well prepared to welcome students back” and have “invested huge sums of money” to make campuses safe for Covid.
The Daily Express Fair Deal for Students campaign calls for better mental health support, more funding, and rental discounts.
Dr Tim Bradshaw, Managing Director of the Russell Group of Public Research Universities, said: “We are particularly concerned about the impact on student mental health and that some students may not be able to participate in additional activities that universities have planned for the rest of the year that would aim to strengthen employability, consolidate learning and create networks. ”
A statement from the Education Department said, “We will be looking at options regarding when to return all remaining students by the end of the Easter break.”