THE VAST majority of classes at University of Limerick, Limerick Institute of Technology, Mary Immaculate College, and all third level colleges will go online for the next two weeks, in a bid to stop the spread of Covid-19 on campuses.
This new Government recommendation comes just days before all third level institutions nationwide reopen since restrictions were first imposed in March this year. The new protective measures apply to the whole country.
It is understood that labs and practical classes will still go-ahead, albeit under tighter restrictions. RTE reports that campus libraries will remain open.
Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, said the next two to three weeks are "a critical juncture" and welcomed the new measures.
“However, at the request of the Department of Health, it has been agreed to intensify protective measures across the higher level institutions to ensure safe continuation or beginning of the academic term.
“This will mean more learning will take place online and on-site activity will be minimised over the coming weeks."
While describing it as "disappointing", Minister Harris said that they are "absolutely necessary if we are to stop the spread of this virus".
The Minister also asked students to minimise travel and social contacts on- and off-campus.
“We must do everything possible over the next few weeks to stop its spread and give students the best chance of resuming on site activity. Please stay safe and hold firm.”
The Limerick Leader has contacted UL, Mary Immaculate College and LIT in relation to the matter.