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Calls grow for students to get rent rebates at universities in England

Institutions also urged to provide academic safety nets to those whose studies are disrupted by coronavirus

Pressure is mounting for universities in England to offer rent rebates and academic safety nets for students, as staff and students say they have been left in limbo while institutions await further instruction from the government after a last-minute change to the start of the spring term.

The National Union of Students and the University and College Union, which represents staff, are urging universities to waive charges for the accommodation students are unable to use until face-to-face teaching resumes. For most students this is scheduled for when lockdown ends in mid-February, although the UCU, which tracked more than 50,000 Covid cases across campuses last term, is pressuring universities to remain online until Easter.

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