Newcastle University to Implement a Safety Net or Near Miss Policy

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Milly Rafferty started this petition to Newcastle University and

This petition is being raised due to the unfair conditions in which students at Newcastle are expected to work in. Despite all going on in the world at this moment in time, students are expected to still produce the same quality and quantity of work without adequate support from the university.

Here, I am calling for Newcastle University to show support and solidarity with students during this time, and implement a safety net policy, based on grade averages of existing students, similarly to what Leeds Beckett University has introduced. 

If this is not feasbile, another option students ask for is a Near Miss Policy, this means students close to the next grade, for example achieving a 59, should be allowed a 60 and therefore 2:1 given the circumstances.

The reasoning behind these policies is to support students and alleviate some of the stress surrounding completing assignments during the pandemic, where university resources and study spaces are limited. Students should not be expected to perform at the same level as normal, given we are not in normal circumstances. 

Furthermore, an email sent by Newcastle University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Chris Day, yesterday evening (5/1/21) seemed as though a safety net policy was being considered by the university. This was only to be false hope, as today students were informed there would not be such a policy in place for this academic year. This is highly disappointing from the university.

We address this to Vice Chancellor Chris Day, and Newcastle University as a whole. Real support for students is urgently needed. Many are struggling with work load, mental and physical health. This needs to be addressed by real solutions from the university, rather than more empty promises of “circumstances being taken into account” when grading assessments.

- Students of Newcastle University

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