On March 7, 2020, President Trump declared a national emergency regarding the spread of Covid-19 in America. The spread of the virus has had a big impact on the nation’s education system. This school year’s abrupt halt with in-person learning due to the Covid-19 pandemic has left many international students pondering what to do concerning their education.
Many universities have announced a new hybrid learning system so that learning can take place either in person or virtual for the upcoming school year, but some schools have decided to opt for total virtual learning. On July 6, 2020, US Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that international students are not permitted to stay in the country if they do not participate in at least one in-person class this next school year. This policy caused much confusion for international students and immigration lawyers alike.
Major universities including Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, along with, companies such as Google and Facebook have spoken out about their dislike for these new policies and threatened lawsuits and legal action.
Annually, close to 1 million international students are enrolled in American universities, and also contribute $41 billion annually to the economy with the hundreds of thousands of jobs they support. Without international students, universities would lose tremendous amounts of tuition and fees being put into their schools. Also, U.S. companies faced losing very skilled applicants who come to get an American education before joining the workforce.
Over substantial public outcry to see these new policies overturned, on July 14, 2020, the Trump administration rescinded these requirements for international students. Trump justifies these actions by blaming the pandemic and wanting to protect the country for additional health threats.
The administration has also stopped processing foreign green card applications, barring asylum seekers coming from the southwest border, and banned the entry of thousands of foreigners on work visas.
If the Trump administration were to bring back policies in question on international students, the same parties threatening legal action plan to continue their stances in order to protect all international students. Additionally, these international students in question also include elementary, middle, and high school students. In essence, as of right now, international students on F-1 student visas can safely enjoy virtual learning this coming school year, but policies can always change as seen in recent events.
Call Us Today to Schedule a Consultation with an Austin Immigration Attorney
If you are affected by this or any immigration issue, please contact an experienced Austin immigration lawyer to assist you in your case. As discussed, immigration policies change daily, hence the need for qualified assistance from Austin immigration lawyer Michael G. Murray. Please call Michael G. Murray, P.A., today at (512) 215-4407 or contact the firm online.