There were 47 new instances of Coronavirus reported by students at the University of Sheffield on Tuesday 13 October, taking the total number of campus cases to 1,016. 

While there’s been a substantial fall in the weekly average number of positive tests- down to 50 from 88 last Wednesday- it’s thought around 1 in 30 undergraduates on campus could have contracted the virus.

The news comes as The Guardian reports university campuses could be locked down in the final weeks of autumn semester so that students can safely return to families over Christmas. 

However it’s thought university bosses are worried they lack the power to enforce such measures and are questioning whether the two week confinement period would just lead to a further spike in campus cases. 

In its current form, the plan would also see all teaching moved online in the final weeks of this semester meaning there was no requirement for students to be on campus. 

But Sage scientists have advised the Government to go further. On Monday, it emerged the scientific advisory group had recommended the abandonment of in-person teaching unless “absolutely essential” until rates of infection dropped substantially. 

The University of Sheffield currently plans to resume in- person teaching on Monday 19 October when the current ten day suspension ends.

The University have been approached for comment on campus lockdown plans. This article will be updated with their responses. 

Image: George Tuli

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