Around 650 independent schools are registered with UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) under Tier 4, sponsoring approximately 14,500 overseas pupils each year. Those pupils are not only an important source of income for schools but also help broaden their international reach and add to the vibrancy of school life.
However, as 'beneficiaries' of the immigration system, independent schools are held to high standard when UKVI assess their immigration compliance, taking an uncompromising line when breaches are uncovered. This brings pressure to bear on schools, pupils and staff – particularly those who have a front line role in dealing with UKVI.
A working knowledge of immigration law and practice has therefore never been so important to independent schools as today.
Our experienced team of specialist immigration lawyers have extensive knowledge of the independent school sector. We provide advice, guidance and support on all aspects of immigration law tailored to the specific needs of your school.
Tier 4 Immigration Specialists
Tom Brett Young, Head of our Immigration team, advises schools and other education providers on every aspect of UK immigration law, particularly in relation to sponsorship compliance. He also advises on immigration applications made by individuals in all categories, be they students, high-net worth individuals or strategically important new hires.
Tom co-chairs the Immigration Law Practitioners' Association's Economic Migration Working Group, and is regularly invited to speak on UK immigration and deliver training for fellow immigration practitioners, lawyers of other disciplines, and clients.
Matthew Burgess provides unique insight and expertise in all aspects of Tier 4 immigration, ranging from sponsor compliance, applications and renewals, pupil visa applications and dealing with UKVI and the Home Office. Formerly General Secretary of the Independent Schools Council, and now a Consultant to the firm, Matthew led the independent sector’s engagement with the Home Office on the introduction of Tier 4 of the points based immigration system
Our experienced immigration lawyers assist independent schools with all aspects of their activities as Tier 4 sponsors, including:
We can also assist you with immigration issues outside of Tier 4, such as:
We have developed a range of services to assist independent schools with Tier 4 compliance, including:
We also run practical immigration training seminars every term, and can deliver bespoke, on-site training to help you comply with your reporting and compliance duties.
VWV's education practice enjoys a stellar reputation in the market as a one-stop shop.