Students staying in halls not allowed inside parents’ homes

Students living in flats and halls can't visit their parents indoors as they are considered separate households.

Students staying in halls not allowed inside parents’ homes Getty Images
Students told they can't go back to their parents' homes for a visit.

Students currently living in university accommodation have been told they can’t go home to visit their parents indoors.

National clinical director Jason Leitch clarified tightened restrictions on household mixing that came into effect across Scotland this week.

He said on social media: “Was asked last night whether students in halls and flats can go back to parents’ homes. To clarify, they are a separate household.

“There are exceptions, eg caring responsibilities, but the law is clear: they can’t meet indoors with another household – even mum and dad. Sorry.”

The clarification comes as more than 1000 students across Scotland are self-isolating in halls of residence following a number of coronavirus outbreaks – in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee, Aberdeen and St. Andrews.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said more walk-in testing centres would be opened near universities in the coming days.

She said there was no issue with testing capacity on campuses, but she warned there was a danger that routine testing of students may lead to people believing they can ignore the rules and restrictions.

Scottish Labour leader Richard Leonard questioned the First Minister on the spike in cases linked to universities, blaming a “failure” by the Scottish Government.

Meanwhile, Scottish Conservative Holyrood leader Ruth Davidson said figures in the last few days “show that we can’t wait over a month to get the centres up and running, we need them now”.

Responding at First Minister’s Questions, Sturgeon said: “There is never any complacency for me in saying these things but there is no issue at the moment of students who are symptomatic getting tested and getting tested quickly and getting those results.”

Walk-in centres are already open in Glasgow and St Andrews.

Bookings are also opening on Thursday and Friday for sites in Aberdeen and Edinburgh, Sturgeon said, with centres also planned for Dundee, Stirling and a second in Glasgow.

At the Scottish Government’s Covid-19 briefing on Wednesday, students were also given a strong warning against house parties.

Scotland has recorded another 465 cases of coronavirus in the last 24 hours and there have been two further deaths of people who tested positive for Covid-19.

The total number of fatalities among those who have had a positive test now stands at 2510.

The new cases represent a positivity rate of 7.9% among those who were tested.