Many students are currently tied into expensive agreements for rooms they do not need and would rather not use. Scotland has already legislated for this. We want all students to have the same rights. We were misled into thinking universities would be Covid-safe. The reality is that they are not.
Daily Rank: #475 • Weekly Rank: #492 • Total Rank: #34
1. Reaching 2.4%: Securing the research talent of tomorrow
07/05/2019 - UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)
- View source
Found: achieve our target of 2.4%, total UK R&D investment would need to rise to around £60bn in today’s money. More
2. 15 Oct 2018 - Scotland and Brexit: Trade and Foreign Investment - oral evidence
18/10/2018 - Inquiry: Scotland and Brexit: Trade and Foreign Investment - Scottish Affairs Committee
- View source
Found: Oral evidence - Scotland and Brexit: Trade and Foreign Investment - 15 Oct 2018 Scottish Affairs Committee Oral
Found: infrastructure and services for all publicly funded universities, colleges and research facilities. In addition
4. 12 Feb 2019 - Immigration and Scotland follow-up - oral evidence
20/02/2019 - Inquiry: Immigration and Scotland: follow-up - Scottish Affairs Committee
- View source
Found: Oral evidence - Immigration and Scotland follow-up - 12 Feb 2019 Scottish Affairs Committee Oral evidence:
5. 16 May 2018 - The progress of the UK’s negotiations on EU withdrawal - oral evidence
26/06/2018 - Inquiry: The progress of the UK’s negotiations on EU withdrawal - None
- View source
Found: Russell Group of universities. You are very welcome today.We have a lot of ground that we want to cover and
1. Tuition Fees
16/11/2020 - Westminster Hall
1: Committee, Session 2019–21, The impact of Covid-19 on university students, HC 527; Third Special Report of the - Speech Link
2: 302855, 306494, 324762, and 552911, relating to university tuition fees.It is a pleasure to serve - Speech Link
2. Oral Answers to Questions
01/03/2021 - Commons Chamber
1: learning, including additional funding for tutoring, early language support and summer schools. We have appointed - Speech Link
2: clarify how he proposes to target support to reach students who have fallen behind most over the past year—those - Speech Link
3: that we need a targeted approach to supporting students to catch up and to making sure that they do not - Speech Link
4: attainment gap between disadvantaged and other students had stalled. What targets has the Secretary of - Speech Link
5: programme of summer schools for disadvantaged students in 2013, it identified that only 50% of disadvantaged - Speech Link
6: education for all students, which is why we are investing an extra £291 million in 16 to 19 education in 2021-22 - Speech Link
3. Support for University Students: Covid-19
03/02/2021 - Commons Chamber
1: (Paul Blomfield) is an assiduous campaigner for students and has spoken to me many times on the topic. - Speech Link
4. Science Research Funding in Universities (Science and Technology Committee Report)
09/09/2020 - Grand Committee
1: open this debate on science research funding in universities. I thank all noble Lords most sincerely for - Speech Link
5. Exams and Accountability in 2021
08/12/2020 - Lords Chamber
1: continue their studies at home. He has already won the Covid hero award, and I am sure that the whole House will - Speech Link
2: circumstances under which students and teachers continue to work and to make sure that students are not at a disadvantage - Speech Link
3: working with the exam boards to make sure that students studying for vocational and technical qualifications - Speech Link
4: entail with schools and colleges at the end of January. Students taking vocational and technical qualifications - Speech Link
6. Oral Answers to Questions
22/06/2020 - Commons Chamber
1: deliver programmes to enable pupils to catch up on progress lost as a result of the covid-19 lockdown.  - Speech Link
2: at half-past 6 announcing support, including for early years and post-16 education, and by half-past 8 - Speech Link
3: Fred Jarvis, and I am sure all Government Members would wish to do the same.This is the party and - Speech Link
4: the 2021 exam season from May to July, to allow students and teachers more time in the classroom to complete - Speech Link
5: at the earliest possible opportunity, when it is safe. I herald the wonderful work done by the Autism - Speech Link
7. Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill (Seventh sitting)
18/06/2020 - Public Bill Committees
1: room. I remind Members that the Hansard reporters would be grateful if a copy of any speaking notes could - Speech Link
2: very much the same spirit as new clause 21, which would require the Government to commission a report on - Speech Link
3: working relationships have been forged over time due largely to the flexibility granted by freedom of - Speech Link
8. Oral Answers to Questions
12/10/2020 - Commons Chamber
1: levelling up opportunities for all. Our £1 billion covid recovery package includes a £350 million national - Speech Link
2: depends very much on the quality of the teachers. In Scotland, teachers must attain a specified professional - Speech Link
3: announced today. What assessment has been made of the students who missed learning over the past six months in - Speech Link
4: hours from the sector at pre-covid levels, even if providers had closed due to the pandemic. Some 708,000 - Speech Link
9. Higher Education (Fee Limits and Student Support) (England) (Coronavirus) Regulations 2020
02/07/2020 - Lords Chamber
1: Lords, we have all seen the devastating impact of Covid-19 around the world. Recovering from this will take - Speech Link
10. Business of the House
09/07/2020 - Commons Chamber
You may be interested in these active petitions
The government has already said that it “encourages universities and private halls providers to be fair in their decisions about rent charges...” We want them to place students at the heart of their decision-making and direct universities to review their agreements and policies to give students:
• a choice of exiting their accommodation agreement early so they can return home
• refunds for the time students are self-isolating
• the option to defer their accommodation rental agreement
We do not currently have plans to legislate in this area. University and private providers are autonomous but we encourage them to be fair and consider students’ interests in their decisions.
The Government recognises that this academic year has been incredibly difficult for students. As a result of the current exceptional circumstances, some students are facing financial hardship, with some now incurring additional costs at their alternative address.
We will be making available an additional £50m of hardship funding, on top of the £20m made available to higher education providers in December. This support targets students with the greatest need.
Providers will have flexibility in how they distribute the funding to students in a way that will best prioritise those in greatest need. Support might include help for students facing additional costs arising from having to maintain accommodation in more than one location or assistance to help students access teaching remotely.
We will continue to work with the Office for Students to allocate these funds and will set out further detail.
The Government is also encouraging universities and large-scale private accommodation providers to refund a proportion of the rent they would usually charge for the term and welcomes the news that many universities and large accommodation providers have already offered rent rebates for students that have been asked to stay away from their accommodation.
Maintenance loans are available as a contribution towards a student’s living costs while attending university. The system targets the most living cost support at those from the lowest income families, who need it most.
Students undertaking courses that would normally require attendance on-site, but for which learning has moved either fully or partially online due to COVID-19, will qualify for living costs support in the 2020/21 academic year as they would ordinarily, provided they continue to engage with their higher education provider. This means that students who qualify are still receiving the same level of support for their living costs, including rent. This also applies when the student is prevented from attending the course physically and is required to study online due to shielding.
Tenants, including student renters, should continue to pay rent and abide by all other terms of their tenancy agreement to the best of their ability. The Government has a strong package of financial support available to tenants, and where they can pay the rent as normal, they should do. Tenants who are unable to do so should speak to their landlord at the earliest opportunity.
Tenants are able to end or surrender their fixed term tenancy early if they reach an agreement with their landlord. If tenants have a joint tenancy agreement, all tenants will need to agree to the surrender. Even if a tenant’s circumstances have changed due to the effects of the coronavirus outbreak, they still will not have an automatic right to leave early.
The Government encourages landlords to take a pragmatic, flexible approach and have a frank and open conversation with their tenants at the earliest opportunity, to allow both parties to agree a sensible way forward.
Tenants should note that a property has not been fully vacated if they have not removed all of their belongings, and it is at the discretion of their landlord to agree to end the tenancy.
There is further information for tenants and landlords in the context of Coronavirus (COVID-19) available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-and-renting-guidance-for-landlords-tenants-and-local-authorities.
If students think their accommodation provider is treating them unfairly, they can raise a complaint under the accommodation codes of practice as long as their provider is a code member. The codes can be found at: https://www.thesac.org.uk/, https://www.unipol.org.uk/the-code/how-to-complain and https://www.rla.org.uk/about/nrla-code-of-practice.shtml.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has published guidance (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cma-to-investigate-concerns-about-cancellation-policies-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-pandemic/the-coronavirus-covid-19-pandemic-consumer-contracts-cancellation-and-refunds) on consumer contracts, cancellation and refunds affected by the coronavirus. This sets out the CMA’s view on how the law operates to help consumers understand their rights and help businesses treat their customers fairly.
Students may be entitled to refunds from certain accommodation providers depending on the terms of their contract and their particular circumstances. If students need help, organisations such as Citizens Advice offer a free service, providing information and support.
Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government
This is a revised response. The Petitions Committee requested a response which more directly addressed the request of the petition. You can find the original response towards the bottom of the petition page (https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/553285)