Today, USI and Students’ Unions who represent Social Care students have collectively written to CORU, the Ministers for Further and Higher Education; Health; and Social Protection, Quality and Qualifications Ireland and the Higher Education Institutions urging them to convene discussions with a view to mitigating the impact of COVID-19 on social care students.
Social Care students across the country are facing difficulties in securing and completing placement due to the current COVID-19 restrictions. This is likely to result in many students failing to meet the 800 practical placement hours required by the relevant professional body, CORU meaning that many students may be forced to complete placement over summer, repeat an academic year or delay graduation.
Many social care students work part-time in the health and social care sector, providing valuable support to the service users they are responsible for, and playing a vital role in the wider sector. Their valuable contribution must be recognised, and every effort should be made to put in place alternative arrangements that enable them to successfully progress in their education and to meet the standards of proficiency for the profession.
You can demonstrate your support through the following actions:
- Share this with your Social Care Department and encourage them to support you in lobbying the ministers and CORU to convene urgent discussions with all key stakeholders
- Share this open letter, and encourage peers, family and friends to share it using the #CareForSocialCare
- Complete this form and share your stories as a social care student
- Contact your TDs and senators and urge them to raise this matter with Ministers Simon Harris & Stephen Donnelly and call for immediate action
Students have been a pivotal part of the frontline efforts throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and social care students are no different in this respect. The lack of ownership over the issues these students are facing is resulting in increased anxiety and stress, and all stakeholders must engage urgently with students and their representatives on these issues. They care for us, so it’s vital that we care for them!
The letter can be viewed and downloaded as a PDF below: