Why lectures just one day a week is ‘impossible’ and other questions about education after April 26
Lack of space is making it a huge challenge for faculties to realise the promise of…
As of Monday, students are once again allowed to physically attend lectures and seminars – albeit only one day per week. However, EUR’s campus doesn’t always offer enough room to take advantage of this new freedom, as EM discovered after making the rounds of the various faculties last week. And this is confirmed by Brinksma. “Enforcing the 1.5-m distancing rule means we can only use 20 to 30 per cent of the floor areas on campus.”
That is why the Executive Board has decided to look for extra room outside Woudestein Campus. “We’ve been in talks with Luxor and Ahoy for some time now.” Over the next few weeks, the latter will be hosting the Eurovision Song Contest, so they aren’t an option for the moment. But it has proven difficult to arrange alternate venues in general, as Brinksma discovered. “It’s allowed under the policies adopted by the national government, but the Safety Region is very reluctant – more reluctant than The Hague, in fact.”
Brinksma notes that ‘generally speaking’, the Safety Region consistently works to balance citizens’ freedoms with the need to limit infection risks. “They’re cautious in taking steps that demonstrably may have created new hotspots later on. You’d have a lot of explaining to do. But now, they have to explain why they’re preventing us from arranging the required space,” says Brinksma. “Let’s put it this way: we’re interested in organising extra room for our students.”
The EUR Chair hopes to arrange extra study areas off campus. But above all, he would like to have new venues for sitting exams. “That would remove the need for online proctoring.” Over the past few months, this form of invigilation led to a lot of commotion among students. To start, students are concerned about the host of technical issues associated with this solution. And later on in the year, they objected to EUR’s decision to introduce a compulsory second camera. Students even considered taking legal action against this new measure.
Later, we will be publishing a more extensive interview with the Chair of the Executive Board, Ed Brinksma, about the re-opening of Woudestein Campus.