The National Union of Students (NUS) has called for an automatic extension of Tier 4 visa issued to Chinese students pursuing education in the UK amongst other measures to help them during the Coronavirus pandemic.
The Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak has caused significant disruption to classrooms across the world and several institutions within the UK have closed campuses as well.
International students, particularly Chinese students, find themselves in problematic circumstances with exam postponements, closure of student housing facilities, and the issue of their Tier 4 student visas running out.
During this period, as the UK battles the pandemic, NUS has called for strict monitoring of Tier 4 student visa durations of Chinese students to be suspended and for automatic extensions to be granted.
Chinese students’ Tier 4 visa should be extended during Coronavirus pandemic
Eva Crossan Jory, Vice President (Welfare) of NUS, said:
“NUS is calling for an end to punitive or onerous visa compliance and monitoring approaches; clarity, protection and support for expiring Tier 4 visa holders unable to leave the UK; automatic extension to Tier 4 visas where necessary beyond current provisions for Chinese students; an end to prohibition of distance and remote teaching and additional capacity for Tier 4 visa advice and processing.
“With major disruption to travel, exams and assessments there will be many other areas that will have significant implications for international students who, amongst other issues, may be unable to travel to their home country, leave to return to their course, or who may not be able to complete courses before their visas expire.
NUS is a confederation of 600 student’s unions across England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales.
Through its members it represents over seven million students across the country and works with more than 95 per cent of all higher and further education students’ unions across the UK.
UK students abroad need support too, says NUS
In addition to international students in the UK with Tier 4 student visas, the NUS has pointed out that British students studying overseas would also require additional support.
Eva Cross Jory added: “We also need to ensure UK students studying abroad are supported especially if it is difficult for them to return home due to border closures, flight disruption and any health concerns.”
Pic: Oltion Bregu