By Mattia Ruaro
London Metropolitan University recently had its licence to sponsor and teach foreign non-EU students revoked, causing all their VISAs to suddenly be invalidated. This decision affects between 2.600 and 3.000 students, who now run the risk of being deported from Britain after the 1st of December if they cannot find another course. Many of these students had already paid their university fees upfront, and are now left pondering an uncertain future.
The UKBA supported their decision by stating that “a significant proportion” of the students did not have a qualification in English and that “there was a number of system failings” in the checks carried out by the university itself.
London MET responded by attacking the way in which UKBA analysis was carried out, since they apparently ignored “information that was made available to them when they conducted their audit”. In addition, they claim that they were concerned because “the current immigration policy is creating confusion across universities in the country” and because “UKBA requirements have changed substantially – at least 14 times in the last 3 years”.
Foreign students are a significant contribution to the incomes of the British education system, accounting for around £12.5 billion a year, and London MET will especially suffer from this, losing as much as £30 million annual loss to the institution. The Vice-Chancellor of London MET, Malcolm Gillies, criticised what he considers a “highly flawed report by the UKBA” and stated that London MET will “fight this revocation to give top priorities to the interests of international students”.
Is UKBA’s policy in terms of immigration too strict?
Or is it their right to enforce the law on the institutions?
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