Feds to ‘name and shame’ colleges that ‘abuse’ foreign student program

Post secondary admins caught in ‘unethical behaviour’ face year-long suspensions and public blacklisting under new regulations. All new study permits for a blacklisted campus would be revoked.

Feds to ‘name and shame’ colleges that ‘abuse’ foreign student program
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The Department of Immigration will ‘name and shame’ post secondary institutions that abuse the foreign student program, according to new regulations. 

Canada accepted a record 1,040,000 foreign students last year, according to recent immigration data. The number of foreign study permits issued have more than doubled (352,305) since 2015.

Colleges and universities must promptly notify the department of all foreign students enrolled, reported Blacklock’s Reporter

Federal inspectors can now verify compliance and ensure campuses are “acting in good faith,” the department wrote in a Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement.

Administrators caught in “unethical behaviour” face year-long suspensions and public blacklisting.

“The proposed regulations would require that the Minister publish and maintain a public suspension list,” said Analysis Statement. All new study permits for a blacklisted campus would be automatically revoked.

Immigration Minister Marc Miller earlier accused colleges of suspicious practices in accepting large numbers of foreign students including some who applied for asylum in Canada. He referenced Ontario’s Conestoga College and Seneca College in particular. 

A February 4 cabinet inquiry revealed Conestoga College accepted 40,565 foreign students last year followed by the University of Toronto (31,380), Seneca College (23,530), University of Canada West (22,375), the University of British Columbia (20,415) and Centennial College (20,370).

Figures showed the top five campuses for refugee claimants were Seneca College (1,590), Niagara College Canada (1,180), Conestoga College (905), Cape Breton University (860) and Centennial College (845).

“I don’t reproach people for wanting to exercise their rights in claiming asylum,” Miller told reporters February 27, “but it can’t be the result of a poor education system.”

“Ontario over the last three years in their education system has had over 10,000 asylum claims,” he said. “That isn’t the sign of a healthy system.”

The cabinet inquiry revealed 36,075 foreign students have claimed asylum in Canada since 2018, Of those a total 32,855 were referred to the Immigration and Refugee Board.

“That is totally unacceptable,” Miller said. “That spike is alarming.”

Conservative MP Garnett Genuis requested the figures.

The spike in demand can be attributed to a greater interest to study and potentially work in Canada, according to staff. “Under existing regulations international students may change their designated learning institution anytime.”

Statistics Canada said one in five (19%) permit holders had no record of studying at a Canadian college or university.

Asylum claims by international students skyrocketed 1,500% over the past five years, from 1,515 claims in 2018 to 25,465 in 2023, according to figures obtained by The Globe and Mail.

Rebel News first highlighted prolonged concerns with the International Student Program, including job losses incurred by Canadians.

Minister Miller refuted claims that foreign students cost jobs for Canadian workers. 

According to the July 2023 Labour Force survey, the unemployment rate for Canadians under 24 grew a full point from 9.2% to 10.2% year over year. It cites the work cap suspension for the hike.

A similar survey in March pegged youth unemployment at 12.6%, with virtually no net increase in employment for youth since December 2022.

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