Private colleges are being sacrificed to please the anti-immigration lobby

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A year ago the UK Border Agency (UKBA) implemented a radical reform of its procedure for licensing colleges of further and higher education as “sponsors” of tier 4 immigrants – students from outside the European Economic Area.

Previously such institutions, unless they were taxpayer-funded (and thus subject to compulsory inspection by the Quality Assurance Agency or Ofsted), had been obliged to seek “accreditation” from one of a small number of approved agencies, principally the British Accreditation Council (BAC) and the Accreditation Service for International Colleges (Asic). This regime had certainly not been foolproof. There were a number of high-profile cases of abuse among private sector institutions, and last April the public sector Glasgow Caledonian University had its tier 4 licence briefly suspended even though it had been QAA quality-assured.

 

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