6 Apr 2020

COVID-19 - useful college sector guidance for student officers

We know that college students’ associations are doing great work in supporting students through the crisis and that much of your time has been taken up with keeping students safe and secure and dealing with issues such as funding and accommodation.

You’ll be equally aware of the momentous impact this is having on the student learning experience and that this impact is particularly severe for some of our most vulnerable groups of students. While we are aware that everything is moving quickly, we wanted to emphasise the importance of engaging student officers with college decision-making around academic provision and student concerns. Your course reps will be invaluable in fulfilling this engagement.

There is a lot of information out there from different agencies about what will happen with assessment and classifications for college students, and we’d like to direct you to Colleges Scotland’s discussion paper around SQA certification during COVID-19. See also, the SQA website for a range of other useful information and guidance documents.

In addition, NUS have produced a guidance document which outlines questions that students’ associations should be asking institutions. This covers a range of topics including:

  • Coronavirus and education
  • Coronavirus and disabled students
  • Coronavirus and international students
  • Coronavirus and housing and health services
  • Coronavirus and student finance and funding
  • Coronavirus and student unions

The questions in this document may provide a good starting point for gathering student feedback and beginning discussions with institutions.

Students’ associations have a key role to play in ensuring that student feedback is considered when decisions are being made, and are a crucial communication link between the student rep systems and the college. It is essential that officers are involved in committees to ensure that student representation is not overlooked while challenging decisions are being made.

For further information, please contact your sparqs Development Consultant (see our college list if you want to check your contact).

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