The UK Border Agency has launched the ‘Highly Trusted Sponsor Scheme’ for education providers under Tier 4 of the points-based system. The Highly Trusted Sponsor license is a new category of license. It will be awarded to Tier 4 sponsors if they have a proven track record of recruiting genuine students who comply with the UK’s immigration rules.
Benefits of the Highly Trusted Sponsor Scheme
Compared with other Tier 4 (General) sponsors, a sponsor with a Highly Trusted Sponsor license will be able to offer a wider range of courses to international students. Highly trusted sponsors will also be given offered new services to recognize their track record of good compliance, such as a dedicated account management function and a more flexible approach to reporting student non-attendance.
A sponsor with a Highly Trusted Sponsor license will be able to offer the following courses to international students under Tier 4 (General) of the points-based system:
Courses at National Qualifications Framework (NQF) level 3 and equivalents; and
Courses below degree level that encompass a work placement (excluding foundation degrees).
Other sponsors will no longer be able to offer these courses under Tier 4 (General).
Highly trusted sponsors will still need to comply with the work placement requirements as set out in the sponsor guidance.
From the above we can summarise that all the Colleges in the UK would stop recruiting students for courses which are at NQF level-3, e.g. Certificate level 3 courses. In order to recruit for certificate level 3 courses the Colleges would need to get on the new list of Highly Trusted Sponsors.
For more information about Highly Trusted Sponsors, please visit the following links.