Refund students’ rents

Refund students’ rents

To Gavin Williamson, education secretary, and Michelle Donelan, universities minister

Students were told to go back to universities in September, yet treated appallingly when coronavirus outbreaks happened on campuses. Students are not cash cows – they should have their tuition fees and rents refunded.

We saw the results of the government’s push to get everyone back on campus in the autumn.

Within weeks, students were told to self-isolate en masse – some even locked up in their halls of residence. Despite paying thousands of pounds in tuition fees, many students received little face-to-face teaching.

The same will happen again in the new year when universities go back, all because the government prioritises money over students’ mental welfare.

We support the rent strikes planned by students at 20 campuses. Students should be refunded any money they have already paid to universities and private landlords and allowed to study online for the rest of the academic year.

In September, the government told students were told it was safe for them to return to university. That was a mistake. The same thing can’t be allowed to happen again – refund the students now.


My son and his girlfriend are in tiny student accommodation and having to do their course via zoom. They should be allowed to get their money back from the landlords and study from home.

K, Lancashire

Students should be able to study online and not have to pay rent during the covid crisis.

Olga, Newcastle

This is a consequence of the monetisation of education by successive governments.

Barry, Cheshire

Students should not be incurring debt for this type of experience.

Anne, Yorkshire

Students, lecturers, and cleaning staff, should not be the Government’s Covid guinea pigs, nor should students be milked for rents.

Ian, Birmingham


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