To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department has taken to secure continued access to UK universities for eastern European students after 2020; and what steps his Department has taken to ensure that UK universities are affordable for European students after 2020.
International students make a vital contribution to UK higher education, both economically and culturally, diversifying campuses and enriching UK student experiences. The UK government recognises the value of international students. In the International Education Strategy, published in March 2019, we set an ambition to increase the number of international students choosing to study in the UK to 600,000 by 2030, an increase of over 30%. A link to the International Education Strategy can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/international-education-strategy-global-potential-global-growth/international-education-strategy-global-potential-global-growth.
On 28 May 2019, the government announced guarantees on student finance for EU nationals to help provide certainty. EU nationals (and their family members) who start a course in England in the 2020/21 academic year or before will continue to be eligible for ‘home fee’ status and student finance support from Student Finance England for the duration of their course, provided they meet the residency requirement.
Applications for courses starting in academic year 2021/22 do not open until September 2020. We will provide sufficient notice for prospective EU students on fee arrangements ahead of the 2021/22 academic year and subsequent years in future.