Tag Archives: tier 4 uk

I’ve been banned what about my dependant?

I entered into UK on student visa on 6th September, 2003, my first visa was valid until December, 2004, after completing the one year diploma, I applied again for further education in BBA, they extended my student visa until November, 2007. After the completing of my BBA, I applied again to extend my visa, but my application was refused, i had the right of appeal. I went to tribunal for appeal and my appeal was dismissed on 28th of February, 2008. I came back to my home country volentarily on my own expense on 23th March, 2009. My applications was refused under the following immigration rules:

“Therefore, you do not satisfy the requirements of the immigration rules for this category and it has been decided to refuse your application for leave to remain under the published immigration rules paragraph 62 with reference to 60(ii) and 57(viii) of HC 395 (as amended), and paragraph 322(5) of HC 395 (as amended).”

HELP ME OUT ANYONE?
– how long I am ban for?
– Does this has any impact of my partner application?

THANKS.

This post was submitted by saj.

Schools Removed From the Tier 4 Register – Will my College be blacklisted or lose its Tier 4 sponsors licence?

In this the last post of our series on schools and colleges removed from the Tier 4 Sponsors Register, we’ll be looking at how the UK Border Agency withdraws a sponsor licence, why they may do so and what will happen to students.

An education provider will have their licence to sponsor student migrants under Tier 4 of the Points Based System immediately withdrawn if any of the following happen:

  • The school or college becomes involvement and ceases to operate
  • If the school or college loses an accreditation it needs to deliver courses
  • If the school or college – or connected person – is issued a civil penalty for employing an illegal worker and they are fined the maximum of £10,000
  • If the school or college fails to improve from a B rating to an A rating and/or fails to follow a Sponsorship Action Plan for 12 months or more
  • If anyone connected with the school or college is convicted of a criminal offence, the sponsor’s licence would normally be withdrawn :
  • Any immigration offence
  • Any people trafficking offence
  • Any offence which might mean the individual is a risk to immigration control

An education provider can also have their licence withdrawn if they are dishonest in any way to the UK Border Agency – I guess this goes without saying! For example:

  • Making false statements when applying for a sponsor licence
  • Making false statements about certificate of sponsorship issued e.g. stating a student has paid more fees than they have, issuing completion certificate despite poor attendance, etc
  • Offences relating to ability to run a business can also result an education provider losing their licence:
  • If any person connected with the sponsor is banned from being a company director
  • If any person connected with the sponsor files for bankruptcy
  • If any person connected with the sponsor is issued with a civil penalty and fails to pay
  • If the education fails to follow any instruction from the UKBA

The above lists of offences that can result in a sponsor having their licence permanently withdrawn are quite varied and widespread. So it does raise the question of what mitigating factors apply when the UK Border Agency makes their decision. We can’t speak for every individual case, but in general terms, if the sponsor’s breach of the rules is down to a rogue employee who was dismissed as soon as management became aware, the education provider is likely to be downgraded to a B rating.

The following list details instances where the UK Border Agency may consider withdrawing a sponsor’s licence, but may apply discretion:

  • If a school or college fails in any way in their role as a sponsor
  • Failure to use correct procedures that allow the sponsor to fulfil their obligations as a sponsor
  • If anyone connected with the sponsor is convicted of a serious offence
  • Migrants who have been sponsored have not complied with the immigration rules they are subject to
  • If anyone connected with the sponsor has been involved with another case of a sponsor licence withdrawal
  • A B rated education provider can also have their licence withdrawn permanently if anyone discloses the password of the Sponsorship Management System to anyone not authorised to use it.

An education provider may also have their licence withdrawn any of the following are true:

  • Students are continued to be sponsored despite twice failing a re-sit and/or repeating a course of study more than twice
  • If a work placement component makes up more than 50% of the total course
  • If students at any time are not taught on the sponsor’s premises
  • If a sponsor offers courses below the required level to students applying for a general student visa

Part 1: The Tier 4 Sponsor System: Sponsor Licences
Part 2: Tier 4 Sponsor Licence Ratings
Part 3: Help, my School or College is suspended from the Tier 4 Register of Sponsors!
Part 4: What happens to my College if its sponsor licence is suspended?
Part 5: My College is Suspended – Will it be blacklisted or lose its Tier 4 sponsors licence?

Schools Removed From the Tier 4 Register – What Happens to My Education Provider if their Licence is Suspended?

Globe-Red-XIn this the fourth post of our series on schools and colleges removed from the Tier 4 Sponsors Register, we’ll be looking at how the UK Border Agency suspends an education provider from the Register of Sponsors and what punitive action they can take against sponsors.

What happens when a Sponsor Licence is suspended?

Whenever the UK Border Agency has any suspicion that a licensed sponsor has breached the rules and poses a serious threat to UK border control, they will suspend a sponsor’s licence pending a full investigation. One reason for investigation maybe a school or college who has allowed a student to enrol on a course without satisfying the entry requirements; for example, if the student’s English level is below the required level but the education provider sponsors them anyway.

Following notification from the UK Border Agency, any education provider under suspension will be removed from the Sponsors Register. This stops the school or college from sponsoring any new student migrants. No visa letters or confirmation of acceptance for studies reference numbers will be allowed to be issued. If an education provider assigns a confirmation of acceptance for studies or provides a student with a visa letter during their suspension, the UK Border Agency will take further action and the migrant’s application will be refused. Any institution under suspension is still obligated to carry out their duties as a sponsor for current students already in the UK. If the suspension is lifted, the school or college will be re-instated on the Tier 4 Register of Sponsors and will be allowed to sponsor migrant students again. The UK Border Agency may well only allow re-inclusion on the Register with a transitional B rating, with sponsors having a maximum of 12 months to achieve an A rating or be have their sponsor licence permanently removed.

If an institution is suspended, the suspension will apply to all Tiers that apply. For example, some schools and colleges are also registered to sponsor highly skilled workers (Tier 2) as well as students (Tier 4). If they are suspended from Tier 4, the suspension will also apply to Tier 2 and vice-versa.

Any students who are already in the UK and studying with an institution that get suspended will not be affected unless their education provider has their sponsor licence permanently withdrawn. However, the UK Border Agency will not consider any pending applications to enter the UK or to extend permission to stay in the UK until the suspension is resolved.

Any students granted a visa for the UK and their education provider’s sponsor licence has been suspended before they travel, are advised to remain in their home country until the suspension is resolved.

How does the UK Border Agency decide to take action?

The UK Border Agency will make a full assessment of the available facts when deciding what action to take against a sponsor who is suspected of breaking the rules. Unless of course the breach of the rules is so severe that immediate and permanent withdrawal of the sponsor’s licence is the only remedy.

It should also be noted that there is no one size fits all approach to the circumstances that affect the UK Border Agency’s decision to suspend or withdraw a licence, downgrade a sponsor or even take no action at all. As a general rule of thumb, the following factors will be taken into account when the UK Border Agency decides the fate of a sponsor:

  • Seriousness: How much harm has been caused by the sponsor’s breach? If the sponsor’s actions or in-actions lead to students going AWOL, the UK Border Agency will take a very dim view indeed.
  • Sustained breaches of the rules: Is the education provider’s breach a one-off, part of a pattern of failings or a consistent and sustained record of non-compliance with their obligations as a sponsor under the Points Based System?
  • Action taken: Has the sponsor taken any action to minimise the impact of their breach of the rules? For example, the UK Border Agency is likely to look more favourably on sponsors who have regularly and promptly update them about any students who fail to attend classes. Sometimes it is individual members of staff who have caused problems for the sponsor and any action taken against them will be considered by the UK Border Agency. For example, if an employee was responsible for the breach of the rules and they were later dismissed, the UK Border Agency would factor this into their response. But, if the UK Border Agency finds evidence of coercion of staff or a deliberate plan to ignore their actions, severe punitive action will be taken.
  • Civil penalties: Any penalties that have been issued to a sponsor or member of staff will also be considered. Civil penalties could lead to a downgrading of a sponsor or even permanent withdrawal of their licence. If the penalty is withdrawn or cancelled on appeal, then it will not be considered.

What process does the UK Border Agency follow when suspending sponsors?

Following an on-site inspection, the UK Border Agency’s Sponsor Licensing Unit will listen to the recommendations of the visiting officer and write to a sponsor detailing any action they are going to take – such as withdrawing the licence or downgrading the sponsor – and the reasons why.

Following first written notification from the UK Border Agency, sponsors will have 28 days to respond in writing to the allegations. This allows education providers the opportunity to submit any evidence or details of mitigating circumstances. The UK Border Agency does not allow oral hearings so any case that an education provider wishes to make must be done in writing.

The Sponsor Licensing Unit will correspond with schools and colleges regarding their submissions and will provide a response to the sponsor within 14 days. The UK Border Agency does have the right to extend this timeframe – they will notify sponsors of this – if the case is particularly complicated or further advice needs to be sought, before making their final decision.

If a sponsor chooses to ignore notification from the UK Border Agency and doesn’t reply within 28 days, the Sponsor Licensing Unit will carry out the recommendations of the visiting officer, without consulting the sponsor. Any school or college in this position will be contacted in writing to explain what action will be taken.

If a Tier 4 sponsor is downgraded or has their licence withdrawn permanently, this will apply from the date the UK Border Agency write to the education provider. This does therefore allow schools and colleges room to still sponsor migrants during the above timeframes by issuing visa letters of confirmation of acceptance for studies reference numbers, however, the UK Border Agency will not decide any applications to enter or extent stay in the UK until the suspension is resolved.

Schools Removed From the Tier 4 Register – Help my School or College is Suspended!

In this the third post of our series on schools and colleges removed from the Tier 4 Sponsors Register, we’ll be looking at what happens to students who’s education provider has had their sponsor licence suspended or withdrawn.

What happens if my College’s Licence is suspended?

If an education provider’s sponsor licence is suspended and they are removed from the Tier 4 Register of Sponsors, any new applications from migrant students will not be considered by the UK Border Agency. Applications made by students will only be considered once the sponsor’s suspension has been resolved.

If a student has been issued with a visa using a visa letter or confirmation of acceptance for studies from a sponsor who is now suspended, they are advised not to travel to the UK. This is to avoid problems with entry clearance officers at your point of entry to the UK. The UK Border Agency should contact all students who are in this situation once the suspension has been resolved. However, students should remain pro-active and continue to check the Register of Sponsors to see when their education provider is re-included.

What happens if my College’s Licence is withdrawn?

If your school or college’s licence to sponsor student migrants under Tier 4 of the Points Based System is withdrawn, the UK Border Agency will take the following action against that education provider’s students:

  • If you are involved in the reason for your sponsor’s licence withdrawal, you permission to stay in the UK will be ended immediately.
  • If you are not involved, your permission to stay will be limited to 60 days. This will give you a chance to find a new sponsor. If you have less than 6 months left on your student visa, your permission to stay will not be shortened.

If your permission to stay in the UK is ended, you will have to leave the UK immediately, or force enforced removal from the UK. If after 6 months you have not found a new sponsor, you will also have to leave the UK or face enforced removal.

If you remain in the UK after your permission to stay has expired, you face action from the UK Border Agency and Police. You could be detained, forcibly removed from the UK and blacklisted from coming back to the UK for 10 years.

I haven’t travelled yet and my College has had their licence permanently withdrawn – what should I do?

When an education provider’s sponsor licence is withdrawn permanently, any visa letter or confirmation of acceptance for studies issued by them becomes immideatly invalid. Therefore, any application made using this documents will be refused.

If you have already received your student visa but not yet travelled and your college’s licence is withdrawn, you must not travel to the UK. Your permission to enter the UK will have been cancelled and you will be refused entry if you do decide to travel.

Suspended Colleges From Tier 4 – Master List of College Suspensions

The following list of schools and colleges have been removed from the Tier 4 Register of Sponsors. This list is historically accurate back to the start of December 2009.

As schools get their sponsor licenses under Tier 4 back, we will place a strike-through on their name.

This list of suspended colleges in the UK will be updated daily.

If you notice a school or college that you think has been suspended from the Sponsors Register, but is not on our UKBA suspended colleges list, then please leave a comment and we will add it to our list.

9 February: 1 added
10 February: 1 added
11 February: 4 added, 1 removed
12 February: 5 added, 3 removed
15 February: 3 added, 1 removed
16 February: 1 added
17 February: 2 added, 13 removed
19 February: 1 added
22 February: 1 removed
23 February: 3 added
01 March: 3 added
02 March: 1 added, 1 removed
03 March: 1 added
04 March: 1 removed
08 March: 2 added
11 March: 2 added, 1 removed
16 March: 2 removed
17 March: 3 removed
18 March: 1 removed
22 March: 2 added, 2 removed
23 March: 3 removed
25 March: 1 removed
26 March: 1 removed
29 March: 2 removed
30 March: 2 added
31 March: 4 removed
01 April: 1 removed
06 April: 1 added
08 April: 2 removed
13 April: 1 removed
16 April: 5 removed
19 April: 1 removed
23 April: 1 removed
26 April: 2 removed
27 April: 3 removed
29 April: 2 added, 2 removed
04 May: 1 added, 2 removed

Please Note: The majority of our staff – including myself – are currently in Thailand where we have 3 offices and a a new one opening soon. Publishing the Registers and updating the Master Suspended List has been disrupted due to the political unrest in Thailand; most of our offices are sadly closed due to their proximity to the troubles. Please bear with us whilst we try to update the lists by hand. Your understanding is kindly requested. I’m sure things will be back to normal regarding updates in no more than 2 weeks (I’m sure a lot sooner, but you just never know).

20 May: 2 added, 7 removed
25 May: 2 added
26 May: 1 added
27 May: 6 added
28 May: 1 removed
7 June: 1 added
9 June: 1 added, 1 removed
10 June: 1 removed
14/15 June: 2 removed
17 June: 1 added
21 June: 2 added
24 June: 4 added
29 June: 1 removed
14 July: 1 removed
19 July: 1 added
20 July: 1 removed
27 July: 2 removed
30 July: 1 removed
2 August: 1 added
5 August: 1 removed
11 August: 1 added, 1 removed
18 August: 1 removed
24 August: 1 added, 2 removed
25 August: 1 added, 1 removed
02 September: 1 added
3 September: 1 removed
7 September: 1 removed
8 September: 1 added
9 September: 1 added
14 September: 1 added
15 – 23 September: 3 added, 1 removed
24 September – 12 October: 14 added, 1 removed
13 October: 1 added
18 October: 1 removed
19 – 20 October: 1 added
21 – 25 October: 2 added
26 – 27 October: 1 added, 1 removed
28 – 29 October: 1 added, 1 removed
30 October – 19 November: 4 removed, 6 added
20 – 29 November: 1 added, 2 removed
30 November: 1 added
01 December: 1 added
03 December: 1 removed
09 December: 1 removed
13 December: 1 added
14 December – 14 January 2011: 2 removed, 8 added
18 January – 1 February 2011: 2 added, 1 removed

  • AA Hamilton College London – Suspension lifted 14 May 2010
  • Access College London – Suspension lifted between 6 – 20 May 2010
  • Albion College – Albion College’s UKBA inspection is on Feb 10 – Suspension lifted 26 April 2010
  • alliance resource nvq training centre
  • Alpha Meridian College – Inspected 16 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 18 March 2010
  • Anglian College London – Suspension lifted 26 March 2010
  • Anglo-Continental Suspension lifted February 17 2010
  • Archbishop Ilsley Catholic Technology College
  • Arthur Mellows Village College
  • Ashdown House
  • AVALON SCHOOL OF ENGLISH – Suspension lifted 16 March 2010
  • Aylesford School
  • Barry Comprehensive School
  • Barton Court Grammar School
  • Bc College Of North West London
  • Belgrave High School
  • Birkenhead High School
  • Bishop Challoner School – Suspension lifted 24 September – 12 October 2010
  • Bites College
  • Blessed George Napier School
  • Bliss Services UK Ltd T/A Bliss College – Suspension lifted 14 May 2010
  • Blue Coat Church of England School & Music College
  • Bolton Community College
  • Bramcote School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • Brit College – Suspension lifted 9 June 2010
  • Britannia College of Excellence – Suspension lifted 11 August 2010
  • BRYNMAWR FOUNDATION SCHOOL
  • Bury Language School
  • Cardiff Management & Languages Academy Ltd
  • Cavendish College London – Suspension lifted 22 March 2010
  • Chosen Hill School
  • City Business Academy – B rated before being removed. Does this signal closure? – Suspension lifted 27 July 2010
  • City Business College (Trading name of: City College of Business Ltd) – Suspension lifted 20 – 29 November 2010
  • College for International Co-operation and Development
  • College of Excellance
  • College of Venereal Disease Prevention – Suspension lifted 24 August 2010
  • COMPLETE EDUCATIONAL SERVICES LTD
  • Commonwealth Law College
  • concept care college
  • Coombe Dean School
  • Cranleigh School Suspension lifted 12 February 2010
  • Cromwell College Of IT & Management – Suspension lifted 27 April 2010
  • Crossways Sixth Form
  • Dartford Grammar School for Boys
  • Denes High School
  • Dolphin School LLP Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • Dunstable College
  • East End Computing & Business College – Suspension lifted 30 July 2010
  • East London School of English
  • eCollege london Limited – Suspension lifted 31 March 2010
  • Edgware Academy – Suspension lifted 29 March 2010
  • Edinburgh School of Business
  • Eduational Programmes Abroad
  • Education Development College – Suspension lifted between 30 October – 19 November
  • EF Brittin College
  • EF International Language Schools Bournemouth – Suspension lifted 29 March 2010
  • Elon University
  • English for Everyone Ltd
  • Essex College Ltd – Suspension lifted 03 December 2010
  • English Country Schools Ltd. Suspension lifted 15 February 2010
  • Estover Community College
  • ETC International College – Suspension lifted 17 March 2010
  • Fairway College
  • Finham Park School
  • Futures College (Barking) – Suspension lifted between 14 December 2010 and 14 January 2011
  • GATE COLLEGE – Was B rated when removed from list. Closed?
  • Gateway2uk Education
  • Gemini College Ltd
  • Girls’ Education Co Ltd
  • Global Vision College – Suspension lifted 7 May 2010
  • Goffs School
  • Golders Green College – Suspension lifted 28 May 2010
  • Grafton College of Management Sciences – Suspension lifted 9 February 2010
  • Grampian Languages
  • Great West London College
  • Greenwich london college – Suspension lifted 25 March 2010
  • Guildhall College – Suspension lifted 23 April 2010
  • Guru Gobinda Singh Khalsa College
  • Halifax College – Suspension lifted 11 March 2010
  • hammersmith management college – Suspension lifted 16 April 2010
  • Harold College – Licence permanently withdrawn? Was B rated before removal from list. – Suspension lifted 5 August 2010
  • Havelock Academy
  • Hereford Cathedral School
  • Holborn College Suspension lifted 5 February 2010
  • ICON College of Technology and Management – Suspension lifted 31 March 2010
  • Impington Village college
  • Institute of Islamic Education
  • Inverhome Ltd
  • Kaplan Law School – Was B rated when removed from list. Closed? – Suspension lifted 7 September 2010
  • Katherine & King’s College of London – Suspension lifted 29 April 2010
  • Kensington College
  • Kimbolton School Suspension lifted 10 February 2010
  • King David High School
  • King Edward VII School
  • Kings School of English
  • Kings School of English London
  • King’s School Oxford
  • Kingston Grammar School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • King Street College Suspension lifted 22 February 2010
  • Leading Management Ltd T/A Stevens College ofTechnology and Management Suspension lifted 5 February 2010
  • Leicester international college – Suspension lifted between 6 – 20 May 2010
  • Leicester Square School of English
  • Leeds College of Art and Design Changed name to Leeds College of Art
  • Leeds English Language School – Suspension lifted 15 February 2010
  • Leeds Professional College – Suspension lifted 14 May 2010
  • LCBIT Private Ltd T/A London College of Business and Information Technology – Suspension lifted 18 August 2010
  • London Academy for Higher Education
  • London Ambassador College – Suspension lifted 31 March 2010 – Suspended a second time sometime between 24 September – 11 October 2010
  • london Bridge Business Academy – Suspension lifted 08 April 2010
  • London College of Accountancy & Management – Suspension lifted 16 April 2010 – Name changed to London College of Accountancy and Management (London CAM)
  • London College of Advanced Studies – Suspension lifted between 30 October – 19 November
  • London College of Business & Computer Studies
  • London College of Business and Management – inspected 10 March 2010
  • London College of Engineering and Management – Suspension lifted 16 April 2010
  • London College of Excellence
  • London College of Finance & Accounting – Suspension lifted 17 March 2010
  • London College Of Law & Management – Suspension lifted 31 March 2010 – Suspended 01 December 2010
  • LONDON COLLEGE OF THEOLOGY – Suspension lifted 26/27 October 2010
  • London Commonwealth College of Law & Business Studies
  • London Crown College – Suspension lifted 16 April 2010
  • London East Bank College – Suspension lifted between 6 – 20 May 2010
  • London Education And Development Academy
  • London Institute of Technical Education – Suspension lifted 14/15 June 2010
  • London North College Ltd
  • London Reading College
  • London School of Accountancy and Management – Inspected 19 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 29 April 2010
  • London School of Business & Computing – Reported to have been closed down. Telephone numbers on website no longer in use.
  • London School of Business and Finance – Suspension lifted 01 April 2010. Most likely a mistake from UKBA resulted in them being removed from the Register in the first place (they disappeared for only 1 day).
  • LONDON SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT AND TECHNOLOGY
  • London School of Science & Technology – Suspension lifted 15 – 23 September 2010.
  • London School of Marketing – Inspection claimed to be 5 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 27 April 2010
  • London Training College (Lewisham / Waterloo)
  • LTC College – Reported to have had their licence permanently withdrawn on 15 March 2010
  • Luckley-Oakfield School Trust Ltd Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • Ludgrove School Trust LTD Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • Lyceum Academy

    Sounds like their licence has been permanently withdrawn?:
    Anybody affected by the recent revocation of Lyceum Academy’s license by UK Border Agency is urged to only contact Mr. Nilesh Agarwal on
    07872 630 003 for any further enquires. – 35 Woodhill Crescent, HARROW, HA3 0LY

    – Suspension lifted 3 September 2010

  • Majestic College – Suspension lifted 11 May 2010 – Removed from the Register again on 14 May 2010. Visas are being refused on the grounds that this college has had their licence revoked.
  • Malvern House – Suspension lifted 02 March 2010
  • Manchester College
  • Manchester College of Higher Education & Media Technology Limited – Suspension lifted 28/29 October 2010
  • Mancunia College Ltd
  • Matthew Boulton College of Further & Higher Education
  • Mayfair School of English – Suspension lifted 27 April 2010
  • Metropolitan College London
  • Michael Hall School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • millennium city academy – Suspension lifted 16 March 2010
  • Modern Manchester Academy Ltd – Suspension lifted between 18 January – 1 February 2011
  • MOI College London
  • Monk’s Walk School
  • Moor Park Charitable Trust Ltd Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • Moyles Court School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • Nelson College London – Suspension lifted between 14 December 2010 and 14 January 2011
  • New London College
  • Newbury Hall T/a OISE Newbury Hall
  • Newcastle College – Suspension lifted 23 March 2010
  • North London College of Business Studies – Suspension lifted 08 April 2010
  • North London Collegiate School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • North London Management School Limited – Suspension lifted 16 April 2010
  • North Tyneside Council
  • North West College London – Suspension lifted 20 July 2010
  • Nottingham Girls’ High School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • Oswestry School
  • OVT College
  • Oxbridge College of IT & Management (was B rated before it was removed from the Register – licence permanently withdrawn? – Suspension lifted 13 April 2010
  • Peniel Church
  • Peterborough High School
  • Port Regis Suspension lifted 12 February 2010
  • Portland Place School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • PORTSLADE COMMUNITY COLLEGE 6TH FORM
  • Prime Medicare Ltd
  • Putney High School Suspension lifted 17 February 2010
  • RANDS ENGLISH LANGUAGE TUITION
  • Rayat London College – Supposedly inspected 25th February 2010 – Suspension lifted 25 August 2010
  • Regal International College
  • Regency College – Suspension lifted 27 July 2010
  • REGENT INTERNATIONAL GRADUATE SCHOOL – Suspension lifted 18 October 2010
  • Renaissance International College – Suspension lifted 22 June 2010 – Suspended again between 15 – 23 September 2010. B rated before second suspension
  • Rims College
  • Rockfield College
  • Roding College
  • Samuel Ward Arts and Technology College
  • SAN Michael College Ltd – Suspension lifted 14/15 June 2010 – Suspended a second time sometime between 24 September – 11 October 2010 – Suspension lifted between 30 October – 19 November
  • School of Business and Commerce
  • School of Information Risk Management – Inspected 11 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 10 May 2010
  • Sherborne Preparatory School: Suspension lifted 11 February 2010
  • Shimna Integrated College
  • Simon Balle School
  • South Chelsea College – Suspension lifted between 30 October – 19 November
  • Southend Adult Community College – Was B rated when removed from list. Closed?
  • Spinnaker College – Suspension lifted 19 March 2010
  • St Bernard’s Catholic Grammar School
  • St Brigid’s School
  • St Christopher Iba Mar Diop College of Medicine Limited
  • St Edmund’s School Canterbury Suspension lifted 12 February 2010
  • Stevens College of Technology and Management
  • St.George’s College London
  • St. George’s College (UK) Limited
  • St John’s Catholic Comprehensive School
  • St. Martin’s Business School
  • St Mary’s Wrestwood Children’s Trust
  • Stoke Park School and Community Technology College
  • St-Patrick’s College – Inspected 15 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 4 March 2010
  • Stratford College of Management – Suspension lifted 31 March 2010
  • Sutton Coldfield College
  • Swanlea School
  • Taitec college manchester
  • TASMAC UK Ltd. / TASMAC London School of Business – supposedly inspected 17 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 17 March 2010
  • THAMES INTERNATIONAL COLLEGE
  • The Brakenhale School
  • THE BROXBOURNE SCHOOL
  • THE BUSINESS SCHOOL OF LONDON
  • The Chauncy School
  • The Financial Training Academy
  • The Lady Eleanor Holles School
  • The Netherhall School & Sixth Form Centre
  • the Practice Development Unit – Suspension lifted 29 June 2010
  • The Royal Grammar School (High Wycombe)
  • The Secretary College
  • THE SIR JOHN COLFOX SCHOOL
  • The Spring School of English
  • The Technical Institute – Suspension lifted 20 – 29 November 2010
  • The WELS Group
  • TOCKINGTON MANOR SCHOOL Suspension lifted 12 February 2010
  • Tollbar Business and Enterprise College
  • Train 4 Care Limited
  • Trans-Atlantic College – Suspension lifted 24 August 2010
  • Tudor college – Suspended again on 2 August 2010. Previous suspension lifted 14 July 2010
  • Twin Training International Ltd Suspension lifted 3 March 2010, re-included on Register 9 March 2010
  • UK college of business and computing – Suspension lifted 23 March 2010
  • UKhelp4u Academy of English Language Limited
  • United College Ltd
  • Unity College
  • Upton-By-Chester High School
  • Victoria College Belfast – Suspension lifted 10 June 2010
  • Virgo Fidelis Convent Senior School
  • Wallington High School for Girls
  • Warnborough College – Inspected 17 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 04 May 2010
  • Waterloo School of English
  • Weald of Kent Grammar School
  • West Berkshire District Council
  • Westech College Ltd – Suspension lifted between 4-9 December 2010
  • Westgate School
  • West London Business College Ltd – Inspected 8 February 2010 – Suspension lifted 22 March 2010
  • Westlands School (Mathematics and Computing College)
  • Whitechapel College
  • Williams College UK Ltd – Suspension lifted 23 March 2010
  • Wilson College – Suspension lifted 19 April 2010
  • Woht College
  • Yeshivas Lubavitch Manchester

Schools Removed From the Tier 4 Register – Sponsor Licence Ratings

In this the second post of our series on schools and colleges removed from the Tier 4 Sponsors Register, we’ll be looking at the ratings that the UK Border Agency awards sponsors, what they mean and the differences between them.

How the UK Border Agency Awards Sponsor Licence Ratings

The rating of a tier 4 sponsor – such as school or college – reflects the track record that institution has in educating overseas students and is listed on the education provider’s entry on the Tier 4 Register of Sponsors. If a school or college is suspended from the register, they will only re-appear once they have satisfied the UK Border Agency’s concerns and will show their new rating following inspection.

A-rated Sponsors

If an education provider is an A-rated tier 4 sponsors, it means

  • there is no evidence of abuse of the system or breaking of the tier 4 rules; and
  • they have all the necessary systems in place to meet their obligations as a sponsor under the points based system.

B-rated Sponsors

Schools or colleges that are given a B-rating – often following suspension from the Register of Sponsors – it means that a UK Border Agency visiting officer has found evidence that the necessary systems are not in place to carry out their obligations as a sponsor.
B-ratings are awarded if any member of staff is found to have a civil penalty within the past five years. This also extends to any convictions which raise doubt as to the education provider’s owner’s ability to run a business.

This means if a school or college previously rated as A before suspension and re-rated as B following inspection, has been prosecuted by the UK Border Agency for breaches of Tier 4 rules and/or has been badly run overall as a business. This does not mean that all B-rated institutions are untrustworthy, as the sham colleges will have their licences revoked, but it should force students and agents to ask more searching questions.

Sponsorship Action Plans

Sponsorship action plans are a series of actions the UK Border Agency has told a school or college it must follow to improve their Tier 4 Sponsor Rating to A and properly fulfil their obligations as a sponsor of migrants to the UK.

B-ratings on the Register of Sponsors should be seen as transitional – in other words, when the UK Border Agency awards a B rating, it expects to see improvement from the education provider concerned. Sponsorship action plans really are double edge swords in that quick progression will see sponsor rated as A, whilst failure to follow the plans laid out will result in a sponsor’s licence being permanently withdrawn. The UK Border Agency will also set a timetable to any action plan, often being 12 months in length.

How Sponsorship Action Plans are Created

Whilst direction and leadership is given by the UK Border Agency, an action plan drawn up is a join exercise involving the education provider concerned. However, the UK Border Agency reserves the right to the final say and can even force education providers to comply without consent.

Sponsorship action plans outline simply the steps needed to become fully compliant as a Tier 4 migrant sponsor and what’s needed to achieve an A rating. Examples of what improvements might be asked of an education provider include:

  • Improving record keeping;
  • Improving control over key staff, such as those issuing confirmations of acceptance for studies and course completion certificates;
  • Improving communication across different branches the education provider may have.

Sponsorship Action Plan Timetables

Whilst the majority of sponsorship action plans are designed to run for 12 months to allow ample time for monitoring by the UK Border Agency, they can be of as short duration as only three months. At the end of the allotted period, the UK Border Agency will appraise the sponsor’s progress and either upgrade their rating or withdraw their sponsor licence permanently. However, there are examples of exceptional circumstances where sponsors have made sufficient progress to receive an extension to their sponsorship action plan. In this case, the education provider will continue to be rated as B and will receive a new sponsorship action plan to follow. Being granted this exemption is dependent on:

  • The sponsor making genuine attempts to complete the original sponsorship action plan; and
  • The sponsor being able to show that circumstances outside their control prevented them from completing the original sponsorship action plan in time.

In as case, the maximum amount of time a sponsor can remain rated as B is 12 months. Education providers must either satisfy all the concerns of the UK Border Agency or have their sponsor licence under Tier 4 withdrawn permanently.

Consequences of a B Rating

Tier 4 sponsors who have been given a B rating by the UK Border Agency will be subject to more frequent and extensive checks and inspections. An individual monitoring plan will be drawn up for the education provider, based on an assessment of the potential risk posed to immigration control. Further controls, such as limiting the number of students an institution can sponsor may also be imposed on B rated education providers.

B rated sponsors will also be expected to carry out extra duties in their role as a sponsor of migrants. B rated sponsors may be asked to report to the UK Border Agency details of all students who arrive to study, not just the students who have poor attendance.

Schools Removed From the Tier 4 Register – How Sponsor Licences are Awarded

Following on from a number of questions, much discussion from our readers – and a real concern over lack of information from the UK Border Agency, Embassies, schools and colleges –we’re going to do a series of posts focusing on schools and colleges removed from the Tier 4 Sponsors Register. In this series of posts we’ll cover the following topics (we’ll update the links as the posts are published):

Part 1: The Tier 4 Sponsor System: Sponsor Licences
Part 2: Tier 4 Sponsor Licence Ratings
Part 3: Help, my School or College is suspended from the Tier 4 Register of Sponsors!
Part 4: What happens to my College if its sponsor licence is suspended?
Part 5: My College is Suspended – Will it be blacklisted or lose its Tier 4 sponsors licence?

This post will look at how the UK Border Agency operates its Tier 4 Sponsor Register system, including how schools and colleges are assessed for licences, the differences between an A-rating and a B-rating and will look at the implications of an inspection by the UK Border Agency on checks, processes and systems for a tier 4 sponsor.

How are Applications Considered?

A key role of the UK Border Agency is to thoroughly investigate any institution that applies for a sponsor licence to ensure that only genuine entities are able to sponsor migrants coming to the UK. Any application will be extensively checked and in many cases a member of the UK Border Agency will visit the sponsor’s premises. A simple motto is currently buzzing around the industry: if the UK Border Agency wants to know more, they will know more. Any UK Border Agency inspection official is able to issue on the spot civil penalties and refer more serious matters for prosecution.

The UK Border Agency basis its decision for issuing sponsor licences under the points based system on three major principles:

  1. Is the institution a lawful one and fully registered in the UK?
  2. Is the organisation and its staff trustworthy? The UK Border Agency will make detailed history and background checks of all and everyone connected to the organisation. Obviously, if any criminal activity is uncovered during this stage, the application for a sponsors licence will fail.
  3. Will you be a capable sponsor? In other words, the UK Border Agency wants to know if schools and colleges have proper systems in place to monitor student attendance. This is step will be furthered when the Confirmation of Acceptance For Studies system goes live, as schools and colleges will be required to regularly update a student’s attendance on their record. If the UK Border Agency has any doubts about these processes they may refuse to give a sponsor licence or award a B-rating.

How the UK Border Agency Scores the Inspections

When a school or college is inspected for a sponsor licence, they are assessed in three key areas:

  1. Suitability of monitoring systems;
  2. Any civil penalties and/or criminal convictions;
  3. Any suspicious behaviour or breaking of the rules by the school or college.

For each of the above three criteria, the UK Border Agency will award a score of 1, 2 or 3:

  • 1 point – meets all of the criteria.
  • 2 points – meets only some of the criteria.
  • 3 points – does not meet any of the criteria.

Any civil penalty or criminal conviction found in the history of any member of staff of a sponsor which has access to the Sponsor Management System will receive a score of 3.

What the UK Border Agency Scores Mean

If a school or college receives a score of 1 in each of the categories and there are is no other information to consider, an A-rated licence will be granted.

If a school or college receives a 2 in any category and there is no other information to consider, a B-rated licence will be granted.
If a score of 3 is awarded in any category the sponsor will lose its licence and be removed from the relevant Register of Sponsors.

But Wait, Sometimes a Civil Penalty is OK

Something very interesting to note is that under certain circumstances a school or college could have broken the Tier 4 rules, paid the fine and then be re-graded as either A or B. This seems quite crazy to me to have as a rule of thumb; surely this a school that breached the rules should only receive its licence back under extreme mitigating circumstances, surely? If a school or college receives a B-rating under these circumstances, the UK Border Agency visiting officer will attach an action, usually lasting 12 months, with the sponsor’s progress subject to review every three months.

UK Government Responds to Tier 4 E-Petition

We previously posted about the e-petition urging the Government not to destroy one of its strongest export industries, the English language teaching sector. Today the Government have responded and as expected, they’ve said nothing in the 79 words they released in their statement.

The Government’s Response:

Thank you for taking the time and trouble to sign this e-petition.

As you may be aware, the Government is currently conducting a review of Tier 4 of the Points Based System, and we will respond fully in due course once the review is completed.  The aim of this review is to ensure that we continue to give genuine students access to education in the UK, to which the Government is strongly committed, whilst preventing abuse by economic migrants.

View the original here: http://www.number10.gov.uk/Page22219

Points Based System Failing Britain and Applicants for UK Student Visas

Aimed at preventing terrorists from coming to the UK posing as students, the points based system has been criticised by a new report for delaying and even refusing genuine students a UK visa.

International students contribute £8.5 billion a year to the UK economy and the failings of the points based system could hurt Britain dearly, with tens of thousands of students put off the application process, according to the research. The report goes on to claim that it is the errors and obstructive behaviour of immigration officers themselves which is creating this problem.

The report presents direct evidence of immigration officials – working in embassies and high commissions worldwide – failing to properly understand the new rules and refusing student visas for genuine students wanting to come to the UK. It is as a direct experience of this obstructive behaviour by officials that genuine students have been put off from applying for a UK student visa and coming to study.

And the problem of refusing genuine students from getting their visa for the UK could hit Universities hardest; overseas fees represent 8% of UK universities’ income. Refusing genuine student visas for the UK could threaten the financial health of Britain’s tertiary education sector and even threaten Britain’s international reputation for excellence.

The study questioned 2,777 UK student visa applicants between July and September, finding that 40% had experienced serious “errors or obstructions”, putting them off studying in the UK altogether. Worryingly, 10% of respondents were refused a visa at the first application, but granted on their second points based system application.

Problems encountered include being refused a visa for stating your nationality as “Nigeria” and not “Nigerian”; passports lost by staff or sent to the wrong address; and the wrong nationality stamped on forms. With these kind of fundamental errors in the points based system, it is no surprise the Government recently admitted that in the past six months alone, 23,000 international students have had to apply two or three times to be granted their visa. This is clearly a huge cost and inconvenience for genuine students as well as undermining the UK’s reputation for education and teaching.

The cost of one, let alone two or three UK student visa applications is a real turn-off to students considering studying in the UK. Two years ago, a student visa for the UK cost £99 whereas today there has been a 47% increase to £145. In fact, 17% of all students even pay a further £200 to ensure that their paperwork is in order. Fundamentally and at the heart of these problems in the student points based system process, 59% of students questioned found difficulty with the applications forms and guidance notes provided.

One student quoted in the study said: “Nearly everyone got rejected the first time because we did not choose the correct drop-down box in the online application form.” Another said: “I had my bank statements all translated into English, but two words were not translated and they forced me to spend another £60 to re-translate the whole document.”

A further 49% of students had trouble showing that they had the required maintenance funds available, although when applying for UK student visas, you are allowed to show the required funds are available to your parents or a relative under the points based system.

However, one student in the report said: “I come from a working-class family in the United States. The need to demonstrate the total funding for the year all at once was an enormous hardship and required my parents to empty out a retirement savings fund.”

Despite all these problems, it does appear that the majority of students are being persistent and remaining patient, the study concludes. But these difficulties have already impacted on the education sector, with 24% of universities missing their international student targets for 2009.

The UK Border Agency’s response to the report was pretty typical: “Whilst there will always be people who will try to abuse our immigration rules, we have robust systems in place to ensure that only those students who are genuinely coming to the UK to study can do so. The points-based system ensures that only those colleges and schools who provide quality education and take responsibility for their students are licensed to bring in foreign students.”

Major Tier 4 Changes Could Affect Everyone

The Government is on the threshold of destroying one of its strongest export industries, the English language teaching sector, worth billions of pounds annually to the UK in visible and invisible exports. Tier 4 of The PBS, launched in April, brought sweeping changes to the int’l education sector. The gov’t’s aim was to rid the UK of bogus colleges, which were not just a security threat but also a blot on the UK’s unassailable reputation in education. This work has not been completed. A further aim was to streamline the issuing of study visas. Some changes were welcome, others serve only to turn bona fide students away from the UK. The gov’t now aims to further restrict int’l students from studying in the UK. That will devastate this vibrant and highly professional industry, leading to mass redundancies in language schools, secondary schools, colleges & universities, with huge losses to the economy and Treasury. The English language is a crown Jewel – let’s protect and nurture it!

As you may now be aware the government plans to hold a major review of the PBS system this December.  It will cover the below focus areas:

  • Should the minimum level of qualification that can be studied through the PBS be raised from NQF level 3?
  • Should the minimum level of English language qualification that can be studied in the UK through the PBS be raised from CEFR level A2?
  • Should English language testing be introduced for all courses of NQF level 5 and below, including English language courses, and if so, through what mechanism?
  • Should access to vocational courses be restricted?
  • Should we introduce a differential approach for countries which have historically been sources of illegal migration, raising the minimum level of qualification and introducing stricter tests for  individuals from those higher risk countries?
  • Should we restrict the work rights attached to student visas?
  • Should we place limits on the progression of students on courses up the qualifications scale without their returning to their home countries?

These particular points could have a significant and detrimental effect on both education providers and students across all areas.

We have been advised by English UK members that there is an e-petition which is available for all to sign online in order to demonstrate support for the sector.

The main aim for the e-petition is for it to reach the top 5 most-signed petitions in order for it to be taken seriously by the government, so do take a couple of minutes and add your support.

The Petition is now live at  http://petitions.number10.gov.uk/PBSReview/