Thursday, August 30, 2012

British Government Must Not Punish Innocent Students

Earlier today, UK Boarder Agency announced that London Metropolitan University would lose its license to recruit students from outside the EU. But included in that decision is another action to suspend and possibly deport about 2,000 foreign students already studying at the university. Their fault? That the University has failed to meet UKBA's license criteria on sponsoring (recruiting) and teaching international students.

Wrong Approach
The UKBA might have a point in their case against the university but the approach matters. To announce verbatim and then action decisions with an unclear threat such as this will have a lasting damaging effect on the UK, not just its admirable education system. This is not the first time such have been done though mostly only on private colleges; yet usually in a different and quiet fashion.

Fair Criteria
The UKBA might have to learn to edit and construct its sentences better in line with what it actually hope to achieve/do. This issue should have been in 2 separate announcement;
  1. that students who has not been meeting attendance, required proficiency in English language, etc could be suspended/deported. 
  2. that Universities (i.e. London Met this time), who do not meet those requirements would be stripped from further recruitment until they can demonstrate systems put in place to satisfy such requirements.
Stripping a university its license to recruit students from oversea should not affect currently recruited and in this case, studying students in middle of their studies. This could be emotionally debilitating.

Government Responsibility
The government has the right to demand such fair requirements, of students attending classes, etc be met. But an umbrella message that appears to threaten legitimate international students has no place in the UK polity whatsoever. This resembles something you would expect from an undemocratic dictatorial government and it is shameful.

As for the level of English language proficiency an international student is supposed to have, this aspect should be a fault borne by and responsibility of UKBA itself. How and why was such a student given a visa to arrive in the UK to study in the first place? UKBA and its visa stations outside UK should answer that and assure the country that its visa staff across the world are well-trained and takes their jobs seriously in making fair and accurate judgement in awarding visas.

No comments:

Subscribe by Email