message from the London Metropolitan University UCU Executive Committee to members sent out today.
By now most of you will know that UKBA have ‘announced’ the decision
to revoke London Met’s right to sponsor international students. As it
stands at present the revocation applies to all current students at
London Met and to all prospective students.
UCU and UNISON have already asked to meet with the Governors and
received a positive response. The governors themselves will be meeting
in emergency session this Monday September 3rd. We expect to meet with
UCU and UNISON will be holding an emergency joint ALL MEMBERS meeting
in the Tower Building on Monday between 1-2pm. Room details will
follow. A statement from that meeting will go to the governors and to
To date we still have very limited information as to the basis of the
UKBA decision. The assertions from Damian Green (Minister for
Immigration) regarding the failings of London Met reported variously
throughout the media today and arising from BBC interviews this
morning (Radio 4 & 5) provide very little clarity. His statements
appear in support of an UKBA announcement that appeared last night on
their website. The link is provided below.
Unfortunately, as you can test yourselves, the link does not work as
the notice itself has now been withdrawn. We understand that this was
at the request of the university who claimed not to have had time to
respond to the decision.
For information the notice contained very little detail itself, but
did include the following short statement, ‘the latest audit revealed
issues with 61% of the files we randomly tested’. Note that this
statement does NOT state the character of those issues nor do UKBA
indicate here or elsewhere the extent to which they sought to satisfy
themselves about these ‘issues’. So at the moment we have a series of
assertions from a government minister and very little else. This is
all symptomatic of the general obscurity that surrounds the decision
and of the carelessness of UKBA towards international students at
London Met. We are demanding at the very least an amnesty for current
students at London Met whilst we seek to rescind the revocation.
Whilst we are clear about very little, we are now sure that a very
significant factor in UKBA’s interest in London Met is the
university’s recent association with LSBF (London School of Business
and Finance. Part of our demands to the Governors will be that this
connection is severed.
PLEASE DO ATTEND MONDAY’S EMERGENCY JOINT ALL MEMBERS MEETING
SEPTEMBER 3rd – TOWER BUILDING HOLLOWAY RD (room to be confirmed)
Cliff Snaith UCU London Met Secretary
Mark Campbell UCU London Met Chair
PS. Despite the removal of the statement from UKBA’s website, you can
still read it yourself if you want to (courtesy of a screen grab). See