Keeping our community safe on campus

"Look after yourself. Look after others." 


Update 19 July 2021

As of 19 July, England has progressed to Stage 4 of its roadmap out of lockdown. As a result, many restrictions have now lifted, however we will retain a number of measures to ensure LSE remains a low-risk environment for our community. 

Up until the end of the Summer School programme on 20 August we will retain some precautions on campus, including:

- Staff, students and visitors will need to provide a valid negative test from the last 4 days to access all School buildings on campus. This includes individuals who have been double vaccinated.

- Mask wearing will be required in lifts and is strongly encouraged in all other areas within LSE buildings, especially in confined and high-traffic spaces, unless you are exempt

- If you’re participating in any Summer School or executive programmes, social distancing and masks (unless exempt) are required in the classroom for teaching and learning activities

- All fresh-air ventilation will continue alongside other measures to maintain a low-risk environment. However, one-way systems will be removed and furniture will be returned, where appropriate.

- The Testing Centre will continue to provide PCR and rapid tests, and testing for travel. You are, however, encouraged to use a home test kit, where feasible, before accessing a test on campus.

- Ongoing monitoring of the local situation and LSE case rates through LSE Trace will continue, as well as the weekly wellness check-in. Anyone who tests positive or experiences COVID-19 symptoms should not come onto campus.

While England’s restrictions are lifting, we still have a duty to keep LSE COVID-secure, especially as case rates continue to rise within our London boroughs of Camden, Southwark and Westminster. 

With this in mind, we may need to introduce further COVID-secure measures more widely at LSE in the future, to help limit community spread. This is in line with guidance from the government and Public Health England who have asked us to continue to exercise caution after restrictions end.


 UK roadmap out of lockdown

Earlier this year, the UK government outlined a plan for a four-stage process to ease national restrictions in England. Whilst we welcomed the news, some steps have a more significant impact for LSE than others. 

The government has made it clear that progress through each phase of the roadmap for England is dependent on many factors. At LSE, we will continue to monitor the situation closely, making decisions based on the circumstances at our School while remaining flexible and responsive to protect and support our community to the full extent possible.  

Find out more about the UK government roadmap and impact on LSE in the sections below. 

Step 1 (first phase, 8 March) - no change for LSE

  • No impact on our current approach, with compulsory teaching, learning and assessments online for the rest of the academic year, as announced to the School community on 5 January. As a social science institution, LSE is not able to offer face-to-face teaching and learning activities on campus this Lent Term as per government restrictions.
  • The Centre Building, LSE Library, and the Saw Swee Hock student centre are open. Opening hours are: CBG (everyday 8am-10pm), LSE Library (everyday 8am-10pm), SAW (Mon-Fri 8am-10pm).
  • Twice-weekly testing is still in place for everyone who needs to access campus facilities and / or lives in halls of residence. We will continue to monitor capacity in these buildings and provide additional learning spaces if necessary.
  • Travelling is not permitted at this time, unless for circumstances previously outlined, such as mental health reasons or unsuitable study or work conditions at home
  • We must continue to keep our campus and halls COVID-secure by following measures in place around social distancing, mask wearing, using hand sanitising stations and not gathering socially in groups. It is likely that many COVID-secure protocols will stay in place until 21 June at the earliest and possibly later, pending government guidance.

Step 1 (second phase, 29 March) – limited change for LSE

  • Rules on mixing of individuals are likely to change to allow six individuals or two households to meet outdoors only. We will aspire to organise some centrally run in-person community building activities that were popular at the start of Michaelmas Term, such as London treasure hunts.
  • Outdoor sport and leisure facilities may be able to re-open and organised outdoor sport allowed again. LSE will look to open the New Malden sports facilities for organised sport activities.

Step 2 (no earlier than mid-April) – proposed timing to reintroduce wider in-person activity and return to campus

  • In early April, the government will review progress and confirm dates to introduce face-to-face activity for a social science institution like LSE
  • Led by the guidance and evidence at the time, we estimate that all other buildings on the LSE campus could re-open from mid-April at the earliest for work, research and study, and we are preparing on that basis. Staff will not be able to return before the re-opening of campus, unless they have exceptional circumstances.
  • We will closely monitor the wider easing of restrictions and assess the situation at LSE to inform staff returning to campus working. Phased over a period of months, staff groups and individuals who need to return to campus as part of their roles, for wellbeing reasons or due to unsuitable remote working conditions will be prioritised. Individuals with their own offices will be able to work from these offices as soon as the LSE campus is re-opened.
  • Pending government limitations, we intend to offer some additional optional, centrally run in-person student events and activities, aiming to increase and expand these over time as permitted. However, all mandatory teaching and learning activities will remain online as previously announced. 
  • Outdoor hospitality may re-open and we will explore what we can offer on the LSE campus
  • Travel restrictions mean many of our students will carry on engaging remotely and we’ll continue to offer the best experience possible for our remote cohort, with opportunities to connect with peers and your LSE community. We will carry on supporting those who need to return for exceptional reasons and provide further guidance as restrictions ease.
  • International travel is expected to still be prohibited or limited during this stage, unless for exceptional circumstances. If you have any queries relating to student visas, contact the International Student Visa Advice Team.

Step 3 (17 May) – proposed timing to introduce international travel and relax social distancing measures

  • The final steps in the roadmap, projected to come into place in LSE’s Summer Term and beyond, are very much subject to the factors mentioned above. However, the roadmap indicates that, potentially, up to 30 people may be allowed to socialise outdoors and up to six people or two households indoors.
  • Indoor hospitality and organised indoor sports may resume
  • Subject to review, international travel may resume
  • While the dates are indicative and many unknowns remain as the situation evolves, the timings are informing our thinking and planning – building towards a time when we can come together in-person as a community, once it is deemed safe to do so
  • Throughout, we will be actively preparing for the wider re-opening of campus and expanding our roll out of optional face-to-face activities which we’ll aim to grow over time, as the situation allows. However, should the risk to our community increase at any point within these four stages, we will re-introduce safety measures to protect our School.

Step 4 (19 July) – proposed timing to lift national restrictions within England

  • Testing requirements and all COVID-secure measures on campus and in halls will remain in place until 19 July at the earliest.  

  • For staff, we ask that you continue to work remotely if you are able to do so. Those who are working on campus should ensure that there are arrangements in place with their division / department / centre and that you have a negative COVID-19 test result from the last 4 days to access campus buildings and facilities.   

  • Students can also continue to access campus with a valid negative test result taken within the last 4 days. Our online services will continue for those who are not in London. 

Support and testing

Remember, LSE is here to support you, so do access assistance during this difficult time:

Student support
Staff support

Visit our testing pages for more information on getting tested at LSE.