Students have been sold the lie they are able to have a full university experience. They can’t

The government and vice-chancellors have a duty of care, yet in too many colleges, Covid security is mere hygiene theatre

Read more: Town v gown tensions rise over threat of Covid infections

With a new term already under way in many universities, the higher education sector has never felt more beleaguered – and most of the blame for its current state of disarray lies with the government.

In the past few weeks the Department for Education has amassed a staggering charge sheet: the exam results fiasco; trying to force campuses to open more widely without a test and trace system in place; threatening to lock university students down in unfamiliar surroundings; and the bizarre suggestion that teaching outside in the winter months might combat Covid.

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