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Implications for SU residences under level 3 risk adjustment
Author: Prof Stan du Plessis: Chair: Institutional Committee for Business Continuity
Published: 29/05/2020
​29 May 2020

Dear Student

As a country we will soon move to risk level 3 and it is understandable that the recent announcement of this risk adjustment has resulted in additional questions for our students. Despite relaxing of the restrictions on movement, universities must still adhere to strict health and safety requirements, and we are awaiting detailed directions from government.

Following the most recent communication from Prof Wim de Villiers to campus, once-off access to residences will be arranged so that students can collect books and academic materials. This will also apply to students who have cancelled their placement and need to remove their personal belongings from their rooms. While these opportunities will be offered, we are not able to grant once-off access yet. We will contact you once the necessary health and safety protocols are in place and when it will be possible to receive you at the residence for once-off access. We kindly request that you do not contact your residence head to arrange access at this stage.

Reminder: the closing date for the cancellation of residence accommodation without financial penalties, is Sunday 31 May 2020. The date of receipt of the written notice will be regarded as the official date of cancellation. Students who cancel their place in residence will not be considered for re-placement in residence in 2021, unless there are spaces available after all new first years and seniors who reside in residences in 2020 have been placed.

Given the situation created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the evacuation of students from campus, as well as the financial pressures on students and their sponsors, SU has determined an appropriate smaller payment for residence fees payable at the end of May 2020. The reduced second instalment together with the final instalment due in September will ensure that SU students pay only for the weeks that they were actually in residence this year.

It may be possible for some face-to-face lectures to resume sometime during the second semester when all students enrolled for a specific module are back on campus. Where a module can be offered through face-to-face lectures, it will not be possible to also continue with online teaching for that module at the same time. It is therefore not recommended that students should cancel their accommodation in residences or private accommodation for the rest of 2020.

If you have any queries regarding the cancellation of your residence placement, or if you would like to cancel your residence space, please send an e-mail to the Residence Placement Office at or If you have queries regarding your residence fee, you are welcome to send an email to

You will undoubtedly have many more questions and while we do not have the answers to clear up all the uncertainty at this stage, we will communicate with you as soon as we have greater clarity on those issues. For now, keep an eye on SU’s dedicated COVID-19 webpage, especially the section for frequently-asked questions. It remains the go-to place for updated information and as new arrangements become available it will be uploaded immediately.

Kind regards

Prof Stan du Plessis
Chair: Institutional Committee for Business Continuity