Welcome to our February 2019 Newsletter!
UK Education Guide in the News - published in The PIE 22nd February.
How to make the value of Guardianship more transparent to international parents?
In this article we examine the issues that are currently holding back parents understanding of why having a quality Guardian caring for their child is important?
Certainly, introducing the role of the Guardian earlier in the education decision making process is vital, as is more overt support from both Agents and Schools for quality Guardianships, notably those accredited by AEGIS. (AEGIS, a registered charity, is the Association for the Education and Guardianship of International Students).
Guardians themselves also have a vital role to play, ensuring their fees are transparent and easy to understand... To read the whole published article, please do visit The PIE’s web site.
In other Guardianship news, we thank CGA, Cambridge Guardian Angels for writing our Cambridge City Guide this month-please see below.
Top international education news stories
Thousands of international students still stuck in limbo after English Language test scandal
Nearly 36,000 foreign students caught up in an English-language test cheating scandal in Britain five years ago are unable to prove their innocence, with their visas revoked before they were able to complete their courses and their immigration status under a cloud.
Thousands of students have already been removed in what the UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) has said was “one of the largest actions ever taken against foreign students in the UK”, as the Home Office responded to the discovery of fraudulent English-language tests where it was alleged that some students had used ‘proxies’ to take oral English-language tests offered by Education Testing Services (ETS).required to obtain a student visa.
While some cheating did occur, thousands of innocent students appear to be caught up in across-the-board attempts to remove anyone who took the test during that period. Lawyers and parliamentarians say “grave injustices” have occurred in the case of many foreign students caught up in the scandal.
UK Education Guide is strongly supporting a Parliamentary motion to allow affected students to sit a new test, reinstating innocent students to allow them to complete their studies.
India protests at fake US University set up to capture illegal immigrants
India is protesting the way the U.S. Department of Homeland Security created a fake university in suburban Detroit in an effort to identify undocumented immigrants who might seek to enrol. India has made a formal diplomatic protest after 129 Indian students were arrested for enrolling in the fake university.
Complete with web site and postal address, the University of Farmington fooled many...
A statement issued by India's Ministry of External Affairs said that the U.S. should distinguish between those who try to violate federal laws and those who are "duped" into doing so.
UK Universities tie up with European institutions to soften the blow of a 'no deal' Brexit
At least a dozen of the UK’s leading universities have brokered their own “treaties” with institutions across Europe in an attempt to limit the threats posed by Brexit.
Some of the biggest names in the higher education sector have secured partnerships with universities on the continent to ensure continued access to research and to maintain student exchanges once the UK leaves the European Union.
The UK Universities that have announced partnership deals with Universities in mainland Europe include; Universities of Oxford, Cambridge Exeter, York, Warwick and Imperial College London.
Chinese students driving growth in UK international student numbers...
New international enrolments in the UK registered a slightly healthier growth in 2017/18 than in the previous year, with non-EU and particularly Chinese students driving the growth while EU new arrivals dipped, newly-released HESA statistics show.
Over 100,000 Chinese students were enrolled in the UK last year, making up more than 20% of the total international cohort.
New enrolments from non-EU countries rose by 8%, with India growing for the first time since 2010, while those from the EU showed a drop – at a modest -1%.
City Guide - Cambridge
Our city Guide this month is Cambridge and we are really grateful to Cambridge Guardian Angels for providing this brilliant guide to their home city. They walk us through a weekend in Cambridge and we start this month with ideas for Saturday and places to stay this month…
Cambridge Guardian Angels (CGA) is an established, AEGIS accredited, Cambridge-based guardianship serving the East of England and beyond. CGA was recently audited by AEGIS and recognised as a “First Class Organisation”.
Welcome to Cambridge!
Full of exquisite architecture, exuding history and tradition and renowned for its quirky rituals, Cambridge is a university town extraordinaire. The tightly packed core of ancient colleges, the picturesque riverside 'Backs' (college gardens) and the leafy green meadows surrounding the city give it a very peaceful feel.
With three Universities within a few miles of each other; the Anglia Ruskin, University of the third Age for the young at heart and the University of Cambridge, the fourth oldest research university in the world, this is a student city to visit and remember. The buildings have remained unchanged for centuries, it's possible to wander around the college buildings and experience them as countless scholars, poets, writers and scientists have done.
Sheer academic achievement seems to permeate everywhere: cyclists loaded down with books negotiate cobbled passageways, students relax on manicured lawns and great minds debate life-changing research in historic pubs. First-time punters zigzag erratically across the river Cam, and those long past their student days wander the busy streets.
The top attractions in the city for visitors are all a short walk from the station or the coach stop at Parkers Piece.
With a weekend in the city here is what you could do…
Start off at the Cambridge University Botanical Garden, a lush oasis just outside the city centre on the corner of Bateman Street.
The gardens are deceptively large - over 40 acres - and feature a range of different gardens including seasonal gardens, a rock garden, a bog garden and an extensive glasshouse full of rare plants.
After spending the morning enjoying the greenery, head 10 minutes down the road for an early afternoon tea at Fitzbillies on Trumpington Street. This café has been a Cambridge institution since 1921. Be sure to try one of its famous Chelsea buns, made with the original 1922 recipe and not for the faint hearted.
After lunch, it's time to get down to some quintessentially Cambridge activities. Grab a bottle of Pimm's or Prosecco and head up the river to Scudamore's on Riverside and either hire a punt or enjoy the journey of seeing part of the city by water. You can either hire one to steer yourself or take a guided tour- rest assured, it's really very difficult to fall in- and not very deep if you do. Punting along the Backs takes you past the spectacular King's College Chapel, as well as the iconic Bridge of Sighs.
After your river adventure, a drink is a must. Thankfully, the Anchor is conveniently right next to the punt hire. By Queen’s College and on the corner of Silver Street, enjoy the comforts of dry land either in the pub's cosy interior or sit in the sunshine on the riverside terrace and watch the world go by opposite the much-mythologised Mathematical Bridge.
Finish your drinks by 5:00pm, then head to King's College Chapel via King's Parade, pausing to take in the Millennial Corpus Clock which devours time before your eyes - watch the grasshopper come to life on the hour. Evensong inside the King's College Chapel usually begins at 5.30pm (check the notice board outside or ask at the Porters lodge to make sure). This offers the chance to admire the chapel's breathtaking interior and hear the renowned college choir.
By now you might be feeling hungry again; fortunately you will be spoilt for choice with Bills or the Cambridge Chop House a great option for dinner if a hearty meal with craft ale sounds appealing.
If you prefer something less heavy and more educational, try The Eagle just around the corner, where Watson and Crick famously announced their discovery of DNA to the world. The pub has retained its old English charm and now serves reasonably priced British classics. It gets very busy so you might want to book.
If you're still hankering for more culture, catch a performance at the Arts Theatre, the ADC Theatre or Corpus Playroom - famous for the Cambridge Footlights. The club's former members include man well-known actors and comedians including; Hugh Laurie, Sue Perkins, Emma Thompson, David Mitchell and Sandi Toksvig.
Sounds great, where can I stay?
The Varsity hotel offers a boutique experience with all the amenities of a large hotel including a gym, spa and rooftop bar. Rooms have large windows, allowing guests to delight in fantastic city views. Alternatively, The Gonville Hotel has a charming atrium brasserie in which to eat breakfast and over 25 acres of parkland.
If you're on a budget and visiting outside term time, take the opportunity to stay in one of the university colleges and eat breakfast in a hall - a true Cambridge experience. Check individual college websites and the university conferencing websites for details. Prefer to stay with a family? Throughout the city Air B&B rooms are available in central city streets as well as the Bohemian Mill Road, famous for its International restaurants and easy student living.