Minister for Higher education Simon Harris has announced that all third level colleges will now be placed on Level 3, with tuition moved online where possible.
The measures, announced this afternoon, will see libraries and laboratories remain open but lectures and tutorials moving online wherever possible.
The move is aimed at curtailing the movement of students across the country and their social contacts on campus.
All social activities on campus are suspended.
Mr Harris said “we are asking w regime to show common sense. If you don’t have to trek across the country to attend a lecture, you should not have to.
The Minister said the country was on a knife edge. “The next two to three weeks is critical.”
In a statement detailing the new measures the Irish Universities Association said for the next few weeks the restrictions that apply to third level institutions in Dublin would apply to all colleges.
Among the measures are:
- Universities will use discretion when deciding between onsite and remote for the scheduling of activities and will favour remote delivery where possible
- On-campus teaching will be minimised with priority given to teaching and learning that can only take place on-site
- It will also include limited planned on-site attendance for other priority student cohorts. This may include small tutorials and elements of first-year orientation/induction which cannot be undertaken on line, so long as these are conducted on a staggered basis to avoid congregation or large on-site attendances
- University libraries will remain open with strict social distancing protocols and entry registration. All research activities will continue as normal
- Social/club activities on-campus will be suspended until further notice. Universities will also enhance any protection measures such as more extensive wearing of face masks in certain settings.
More to follow.