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Coronavirus-Extended Terms Annexed to the Accommodation Licence

As a result of Covid-19, St Mary’s needs to make changes in the way it operates student accommodation to ensure students remain safe. Your health, safety and wellbeing are our top priority. As such, we have implemented a number of measures in response to Covid-19, so that you will be able to enjoy your student experience at St Mary’s. Any measures put in place are based on the latest guidance published by Public Health England, Department of Education, Richmond and Wandsworth Borough and national Government advice.
 
We want to ensure your experience remains welcoming, inclusive and safe during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Operational Changes Around Campus

 
Face coverings, hygiene, social distancing and staying informed
 
While using campus facilities and living in Halls you will have to be mindful of other students and staff members wellbeing. You will be sharing your experience amongst others, which means you will come into contact with other people. For safety we ask you to:
(i) Wear face coverings in shared areas, communal spaces, public spaces, such as the library or social learning spaces, and the Refectory when not eating.
 
(ii) Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands regularly and clean shared areas such as sinks and bathrooms after use. We have increased the cleaning requirements for shared spaces and hand washing facilities will be widely available throughout campus and Halls.
 
 (iii) Follow rules for using common rooms and study areas. If common areas are permitted to open, there will be a limit to how many students can use them at the same time and they will have socially distanced seating.

Arrival and moving in

Extended Arrival Period
  • In order to make the arrival process as safe and relaxing as possible you will need to book a timed arrival slot between 21st September 2020 until 27th September 2020.
  • We have arranged an extended arrival week to ensure the check-in process allows for social distancing measures to be maintained, in order to keep our students and staff safe.
  • Whilst we will enable a selection of time slots and availability it is important that you keep to your arranged arrival slot in order to maintain social distancing measures and a safe moving in experience.
  • In order to manage the number of people arriving on campus we ask that students limit the number of people accompanying them to induction. We will limit access to university accommodation to the student plus one member of their current household to help manage the process.
  • If you anticipate arriving later than this extended period, please contact accommodation@stmarys.ac.uk (see clause 8 in the Accommodation Licence Terms and Conditions).
  • If you, or anyone in your household bubble, is displaying symptoms of Coronavirus, however mild, please self-isolate immediately and complete our online self-reporting form.

Household Bubble

Students sharing communal facilities will form household bubbles
 
  • Resident Students will form a household bubble with other students sharing communal facilities such as Kitchens and bathrooms.
  • In larger halls, where there are multiple facilities, residents will be assigned to a household based on their floor, corridor and/or kitchen.
Guests in Halls
Currently, we do not allow guests in Halls. We will review our guest policy in line with the circumstances surrounding Coronavirus. Overnight guests are never permitted (see clause 14.1.4 in the Accommodation Licence Terms and Conditions).

Self-Isolating in Halls

Students arriving from areas requiring a period of self-isolation or to report suspected Covid-19 symptoms
 
  • Students coming from a country requiring a period of self-isolation on arrival must have informed the Accommodation team of their early arrival by completing an online form by 10th August 2020. Late requests will be considered on a case by case basis.
  • We will provide you with essential services and support which will enable you to safely self-isolate in your room, if you need to do this at the start or at any point during your stay.
  • The University is taking its obligations to protect the community extremely seriously and will actively ensure that the self-isolation guidelines are being adhered to at all times.
  • If you, or anyone in your household bubble, is displaying symptoms of Coronavirus, however mild, please self-isolate immediately and complete our online self-reporting form.
Sharing Bathrooms and Kitchens
Generally, you will use facilities with the other members of your household bubble in a mutual way, for example:
 
  • We will provide cleaning products to wipe down surfaces after use.
  • Avoid large social gatherings in kitchens and communal areas.
Shared (Twin) Bedrooms
If you share a bedroom, like with other members of your household bubble, you do not need to socially distance from each other.
 
  • Stay mindful of the needs of your roommate and other students who use the communal areas living in Halls.
Meals in the Refectory
The Refectory is a great place to come together each day and enjoy a social atmosphere. To ensure the Refectory does not get too busy or congested we will (where necessary):
 
  • Facilitate household dining areas, where you will eat with other members of your household bubble
  • Schedule different sittings
  • Change entry and exit access into the refectory
  • Change seating layouts
  • Offer takeaway options
 
We will give you further guidance on the changes implemented by us during your induction.

Accommodation Licence Terms and Conditions and Cancellation Terms

We welcome those who would like to live in University Accommodation. Offers made through our e-Accommodation Portal form a legally binding contract upon acceptance.

Ending Accommodation Licence Early as a Result of Coronavirus

Accommodation Period
For most University Accommodation your Accommodation Licence period will run from 21st September 2020 to 30th May 2021 where you will be required to pay for your Accommodation Licence on the dates set out in the Payment Schedule of Room Offer.
 
Coronavirus - Locakdown measures
In the event there is a significant rise in the incidence of Coronavirus, where local or national lockdown measures are imposed by local council or Government, our Halls will follow the guidance and seek to provide essential services and operate in a safe manner.
 
  • To clarify, St Mary’s will not be offering release from licence agreements, except under the existing terms for termination. We will continue to work with Public Health England to ensure our operations remain safe for staff and students. Should another outbreak occur causing a local or national lockdown, the University will assess the situation at the time and any actions taken as a result will be based on direct advice provided from the government and/or Public Health England.
  • St Mary’s will continue to deliver effective and high-quality teaching by liaising with programme leaders and organising the most efficient way to continue assessments and lectures with as little disruption as possible.
  • Teaching timetables will be released prior to your arrival at St Mary’s. There may be further changes made to timetables throughout the academic year. Depending on the nature of the course, some courses may offer more contact hours than others.
  • As above, St Mary’s will not be offering release from your licence agreement based on number of contact hours, this includes if there is a reduction in face-to face teaching and learning during academic year.

Changes to Guidance

St Mary’s will continue to operate in accordance with the latest government guidance in relation to Covid-19. The University will keep update you by email with any changes that affect you as a resident.