474 colleges lose right to recruit foreign students; 4,500 pleas to study refused

More than 474 colleges have so far lost their right to recruit international students after they failed to sign up for a new inspection system.



The new rules and a clampdown on abuse of the student visa system also mean nearly 500 colleges will no longer be able to bring new international students to the UK to study.

The Home Office added: `The colleges – a number of which were bogus and did not offer genuine courses – could have brought more than 11,000 students into the UK to study each year.

`New UK Border Agency regulations have raised the standards education providers must meet to sponsor international students. So far, 474 colleges have lost their right to recruit international students after they failed to sign up for the new inspection system.  The new standards will help ensure genuine international students get a good quality education in the UK.

`A related UK Border Agency investigation into more than 100 colleges has led to 51 having their licences revoked. The investigation followed a surge in applications from South Asia just before the English language requirement rules were tightened earlier this year. More than 4,500 of these applications to study have been refused or withdrawn as a result’.

The Home Office added: `Officials encountered evidence of clear abuse. One student interviewed to test his English skills answered almost every question with the word hello. At another college, staff turned the lights off and hid when inspectors called; and one college was unable to provide any timetables of classes or registers of students enrolled. A Norfolk-based college had students whose home address was recorded as Glasgow.



Further measures to tighten student visa rules due in April next

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