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Space for Quarantining Students

Universities in the UK are concerned that limited quarantine capacity may lead to a decline in international students, the Financial Times reports.

Students arriving from "red-list countries" – which currently include India, South Africa, and Brazil, among others, according to a UK government site – must quarantine for 10 days upon arrival, but universities and businesses are warning that there are not enough suitable accommodations, FT says. It adds that Russell Group universities are calling on the UK government to relax visa rules and expand capacity so students' quarantine times can be better spaced out. For the 2019 to 2020 academic year, FT says that 107,000 students arrived from what are now red-list countries, and a similar number are expected this year. It notes that the government says there are thousands of rooms available.

Additionally, FT says students must arrive by September 27 for in-person classes to be eligible for a visa that allows them to stay in the UK after their studies.

"Ministers must make this change now to allow students to plan effectively, without incurring additional expense with needless flight and accommodation changes," Paul Blomfield, the Labour chair of the all-party parliamentary group for students, tells FT.