US: Foreign students whose classes moved online will be asked to leave

DY365
DY365
Published: July 7,2020 12:20 PM
DY365

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July 07, 2020: Foreign students will not be allowed to stay in the US this autumn if their universities have moved classes fully online, unless they switch to a course with in-person tuition.

July 07, 2020: Foreign students will not be allowed to stay in the US this autumn if their universities have moved classes fully online, unless they switch to a course with in-person tuition.



The US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency said people could face deportation if they do not comply with the rules.  



The guidelines, issued by ICE, provide additional pressure for universities to reopen even amid growing concerns about the recent spread of COVID-19 among young adults.



A number of schools are looking at a hybrid model of in-person and online instruction but some, including Harvard University, have said all classes will be conducted online.



"Nonimmigrant F-1 and M-1 students attending schools operating entirely online may not take a full online course load and remain in the United States," US Immigration and Custom Enforcement said in a statement.



"Active students currently in the United States enrolled in such programs must depart the country or take other measures, such as transferring to a school with in-person instruction to remain in lawful status," ICE said.



"If not, they may face immigration consequences including, but not limited to, the initiation of removal proceedings."



ICE said the State Department "will not issue visas to students enrolled in schools and/or programs that are fully online for the fall semester nor will US Customs and Border Protection permit these students to enter the United States." 



F-1 students pursue academic coursework and M-1 students pursue "vocational coursework," according to ICE.



There were more than one million international students in the United States for the 2018-19 academic year, according to the Institute of International Education (IIE).



That accounted for 5.5 percent of the total US higher education population, the IIE said, and international students contributed $44.7 billion to the US economy in 2018.



The largest number of international students came from China, followed by India, South Korea, Saudi Arabia and Canada.