Trump administration rescinds rule on foreign students

The Trump administration has rescinded a rule that would have required international students to transfer schools or leave the country if their colleges hold classes entirely online this fall because of the coronavirus pandemic.

News 12 Staff

Jul 14, 2020, 7:25 PM

Updated 1,403 days ago

Share:

Trump administration rescinds rule on foreign students
Facing eight federal lawsuits and opposition from hundreds of universities, the Trump administration on Tuesday rescinded a rule that would have required international students to transfer or leave the country if their schools held classes entirely online because of the pandemic.
The decision was announced at the start of a hearing in a federal lawsuit in Boston brought by Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. U.S. District Judge Allison Burroughs said federal immigration authorities agreed to pull the July 6 directive and “return to the status quo.”
A lawyer representing the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said only that the judge’s characterization was correct.
The announcement brings relief to thousands of foreign students who had been at risk of being deported from the country, along with hundreds of universities that were scrambling to reassess their plans for the fall in light of the policy.
Under the policy, international students in the U.S. would have been forbidden from taking all their courses online this fall. New visas would not have been issued to students at schools planning to provide all classes online, which includes Harvard. Students already in the U.S. would have faced deportation if they didn’t transfer schools or leave the country voluntarily.
Immigration officials issued the policy last week, reversing earlier guidance from March 13 telling colleges that limits around online education would be suspended during the pandemic. University leaders believed the rule was part of President Donald Trump’s effort to pressure the nation’s schools and colleges to reopen this fall even as new virus cases rise.
The policy drew sharp backlash from higher education institutions, with more than 200 signing court briefs supporting the challenge by Harvard and MIT. Colleges said the policy would put students’ safety at risk and hurt schools financially. Many schools rely on tuition from international students, and some stood to lose millions of dollars in revenue if the rule had taken hold.
Harvard and MIT were the first to contest the policy, but at least seven other federal suits had been filed by universities and states opposing the rule.
Harvard and MIT argued that immigration officials violated procedural rules by issuing the guidance without justification and without allowing the public to respond. They also argued that the policy contradicted ICE’s March 13 directive telling schools that existing limits on online education would be suspended “for the duration of the emergency.”
The suit noted that Trump’s national emergency declaration has not been rescinded and that virus cases are spiking in some regions.
Immigration officials, however, argued that they told colleges all along that any guidance prompted by the pandemic was subject to change. They said the rule was consistent with existing law barring international students from taking classes entirely online. Federal officials said they were providing leniency by allowing students to keep their visas even if they study online from abroad.
By COLLIN BINKLEY, AP Education Writer
 


More from News 12
1:53
Hudson Valley unites to help Ukraine, continues local efforts to help war-torn country

Hudson Valley unites to help Ukraine, continues local efforts to help war-torn country

1:47
Mostly cloudy, chance for scattered afternoon showers for Saturday in the Hudson Valley

Mostly cloudy, chance for scattered afternoon showers for Saturday in the Hudson Valley

0:20
Police: Spikes deployed by officers to stop car during pursuit in Town of Bedford

Police: Spikes deployed by officers to stop car during pursuit in Town of Bedford

0:30
Yorktown Grange Fair to celebrate its 100th anniversary this September

Yorktown Grange Fair to celebrate its 100th anniversary this September

1:48
City of Mount Vernon celebrates and reflects 70 years since landmark Brown v. Board of Ed decision

City of Mount Vernon celebrates and reflects 70 years since landmark Brown v. Board of Ed decision

0:27
Man arrested for hate crime at Kingston synagogue

Man arrested for hate crime at Kingston synagogue

0:31
Westchester County DA: Peekskill man pleads guilty to gunning down man in front of his children

Westchester County DA: Peekskill man pleads guilty to gunning down man in front of his children

0:47
Two Middletown state troopers honored for heroism

Two Middletown state troopers honored for heroism

1:44
Caught on camera: Person seen taking down Israeli flag from Rockland County business

Caught on camera: Person seen taking down Israeli flag from Rockland County business

0:59
Man who allegedly set Warwick home of trooper’s family on fire indicted for attempted murder

Man who allegedly set Warwick home of trooper’s family on fire indicted for attempted murder

1:31
DEC tranquilizes, safely relocates bear in Poughkeepsie neighborhood

DEC tranquilizes, safely relocates bear in Poughkeepsie neighborhood

1:45
Transfiguration School set to close with little notice, leaving parents scrambling to find new schools

Transfiguration School set to close with little notice, leaving parents scrambling to find new schools

0:50
New firefighter training center opens in Pomona

New firefighter training center opens in Pomona

0:53
29th annual Today's Students Tomorrow's Teachers brunch celebrates future educators

29th annual Today's Students Tomorrow's Teachers brunch celebrates future educators

0:19
Playland Park's Gondola Wheel closed due to active Osprey nesting

Playland Park's Gondola Wheel closed due to active Osprey nesting

0:35
Ossining family awarded over $23 million for medical malpractice lawsuit against Westchester Medical Center

Ossining family awarded over $23 million for medical malpractice lawsuit against Westchester Medical Center

1:04
Royal Regency Hotel in Yonkers celebrates 30 years of business

Royal Regency Hotel in Yonkers celebrates 30 years of business

0:41
Lakeland Central School District joins search for 2 missing Westchester teens

Lakeland Central School District joins search for 2 missing Westchester teens

0:23
New York Rangers beat Carolina Hurricanes 5-3 to advance to Eastern Conference Final

New York Rangers beat Carolina Hurricanes 5-3 to advance to Eastern Conference Final

0:52
New image released of missing Westchester County teens

New image released of missing Westchester County teens