English UK member centres urge others to sign petition on international students and migrant figures
19 May 2015

English UK members are urging host families and staff to sign an online petition calling for students to be removed from the UK's migrant figures.

The petition, on the 38degrees website, has been created by Peter Hayes at IH Manchester as a result of new research published this week by London First and PwC suggesting that international students in the capital bring a net benefit of £2.3bn to the UK economy, supporting around 70,000 jobs as a result of the money they spend. The research also found that 60 per cent international students were more likely to do business with the UK as a result of studying here, and that 92 per cent would recommend studying in the UK to friends and family.

However, more than a third found that the UK's immigration system had "negatively affected" their experience of studying here. The report calls for government to use hard data in setting immigration targets, classify students as temporary visitors, and create an environment where "British-educated overseas talent is valued as an asset rather than treated as a liability".

Links to the report, and the petition, are being shared on the English UK member forum with many centres encouraging staff and host families to sign. 

English UK is also encouraging member centres to campaign for the sector with local MPs. We have sent out a campaigning toolkit and leaflet, Work With Us, which includes four ways in which we would like to see the climate change for the ELT sector, plus useful information and advice. 

We have also commissioned an economic impact report to get accurate figures on the value of the ELT sector to the UK for use in campaigning: that report is likely to be ready in the early autumn.

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