Student Safety Net

The disruption to education that the Coronavirus pandemic has caused is significant and students are suffering. We urgently need action, help us to lobby the government in our campaign to secure a student safety net. 

We’re campaigning for a Student Safety Net. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about an economic crash and students are being hit hard. 

We want a hardship fund that everyone in the UK can access and a grant for people who complete their education this year.  

We want the chance for students to redo, reimburse or write-off – to be able to do this year of their course again, or to have their debt and tuition or college fees written off and reimbursed.

Support this campaign by sharing our demands on social media and adding why they’re important to you.

We need a Student Safety Net.

Why are we doing this?

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about an economic crash. A third of students are at risk of losing their education. Students are now in a financial storm, their living situations and education severely disrupted, and are deeply concerned for their family members. We urgently need action - help us to lobby the government in our campaign to secure a student safety net.

What have students told us?

Our recent survey of almost 10,000 students has shown that COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on our education. Students’ placements have been paused, lessons moved online and colleges shut. Students are being made to pay for accommodation they no longer need and are at acute financial risk due to the financial effects of the crisis. We are concerned about the long-term effects COVID-19 will have on their future and the wider economy.

  • 33 per cent of students are at critical risk of being unable to access their education;

  • 74 per cent are worried about the risk to their final qualifications;

  • Up to 85 per cent of working students may need additional financial support as incomes drop;

  • 95 per cent of students expressed fears about the impact of the virus on the wider economy;

  • 81 per cent expressed concerns about their job prospect; and 71 per cent worried about the impact the pandemic will have on their employability

That’s why we need a student safety net. We believe that every student, at all levels of education, should have access to a national hardship funding and every education leaver should have access to an additional grant, which can be used for training and developing their skills. This is the student safety net we need. 

The current crisis has shown that students occupy the worst of all possible worlds – with the majority paying extortionate fees for their education and are treated as consumers but are left out in the cold when the product cannot be delivered as described. We need the chance to redo, reimburse or write-off.  

Anyone who wants to should be able to repeat this year of studies, at no additional cost. Anyone who has paid fees through the student loan system should have their debt for this year written off – and if you’ve paid upfront, you should get that reimbursed. 


How can you get involved?

We need to work together in lobbying the government for our key asks:

  • A national hardship fund for all current students (including HE, FE and apprentices)

  • A financial support package for those leaving education - grants to ensure they get access to additional training and skills development

  • The opportunity to retake the year of education at no additional cost, receiving full maintenance support

  • Reimbursements of fees or a debt write off from the government

Share the campaign!

Click here to download our campaign assets.

You can share these on social media - tag us in your posts and make sure to use the hashtag #StudentSafetyNet. We need to build momentum and enure that students are NOT falling through the cracks.

Visit our Student Safety Net hub over on NUS Connect to find out more information about the campain and get involved.