Responding to a report published by the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Students into tuition and accommodations costs during Covid-19, Hillary Gyebi-Ababio, NUS Vice President for Higher Education, said -
“This report clearly spells out the issues that students are facing and we would fully support the calls for a substantial increase to hardship funding, maintenance grants, allowing students to leave tenancy contracts and a national ‘safety net’ to ensure students can progress.
“Students have been ignored throughout this pandemic and so it is very welcome to see the APPG for Students advocating for these support mechanisms. COVID-19 has exposed the flaws that have always existed in our student finance system, and so we need to see these measures, including maintenance grants, brought in permanently to allow all students to progress through university.
“It is also important to look at the needs for other groups of students, including international students. They deserve justice for the disruption they have faced; including having to access their lectures and exams in entirely different timezones, or moving to a new country only to be locked down. We are also delighted that the group has acknowledged the issues faced by PGR students and the need for extensions to funding for their projects.
“Students deserve better than to be stuck paying rent for accommodation they cannot access or afford, missing out on learning because of a lack of technology and being unable to progress through education. These recommendations would go some way to putting these things right.”