A major investigation has been launched after dozens of students breached Covid regulations by attending a party at a St Andrews University halls of residence.
Professor Sally Mapstone has written to all students and staff condemning all those involved in the incident at the weekend at David Russell Apartments, and revealed disciplinary action will be taken against them.
Up to 40 students were at the party in one block at David Russell Apartments, and many of those in attendance are said to have “ran away” or “jumped from windows” when they were rumbled by the University’s Security and Response Team.
It has also emerged that a member of the university’s staff was injured by one of the people fleeing the scene and required hospital treatment.
Police Scotland are now investigating the incident, while the university itself has promised to take disciplinary action at the conclusion of its own probe.
‘An illegal gathering’
Professor Mapstone has left students in no doubt about how seriously she is treating the weekend’s shenanigans.
“Under the current law in Scotland, this was an illegal gathering,” she said.
“It was attended by people who clearly knew they were breaking the law, and who showed no respect or responsibility for the health of others, including our staff, their fellow students, and the local community.
“We all know that St Andrews students are not a homogenous group.
“Many residents of DRA and others who have heard about what happened are appalled by the selfish and reckless behaviour of the minority who organised and attended this party.
“The responsible and intelligent attitude of the vast majority of our students got us through first semester, and we will be doing everything we can to nurture that partnership approach to managing the risks of Covid in this second term.
“Mutual support and respect for the Covid Code are more important than ever in these dangerous times.
“Everyone knows that since the turn of the year the law in Scotland prohibits parties which mix households.
“The law exists for the simple purpose of saving life, and breaking it is not a game, unless you think that risking the lives of others and your own future at this university is a game.”
Prof Mapstone also highlighted that the situation at the university is different from the first Semester, with much more transmissible variants of Covid present.
“Thank you to all of you who are alert to that threat, who have done so much and sacrificed so much to support each other, the University and our community through these past nine months,” she continued.
“I know that those sacrifices are at significant personal cost. I am so sorry that you have to be included in this message.
“To the very small minority of others who believe they are so above the most basic duties of collective responsibility, there is no place for you in St Andrews.”
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