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House Approves Bill to Ban Foreign Students from Attending Unaccredited Schools



By Catherine Groux
Posted August 06, 2012 10:16 AM

A House bill would prevent students from attending unaccredited colleges with a visa.
A House bill would prevent students from attending unaccredited colleges with a visa.
In order to ensure foreign students are receiving high-quality education in the U.S., the House of Representatives recently approved legislation that bans individuals from receiving a student visa to attend an unaccredited university, The Chronicle of Higher Education reports. The bill, which is known as the Student Visa Reform Act, requires all postsecondary institutions that enroll 25 or more students on non-immigrant visas to be nationally or regionally accredited by an organization approved by the Department of Education.

If the bill is passed by the U.S. Senate, supporters believe it will prevent fraudulent universities from attracting thousands of foreign students and selling them a low-quality education for the right to live and work in the U.S.

"...The accreditation requirements instituted by this bill will prevent illegitimate institutions from cheating foreign students who legitimately seek a bona fide education in the United States," said Zoe Lofgren, the California U.S. representative who proposed the bill. "In addition, this requirement will prevent fly-by-night institutions from engaging in student visa fraud to smuggle or traffic persons into the country."

The idea for the bill was derived from recent scandals in California in which select schools allegedly attempted to attract foreign students by claiming they received accreditation from little-known, and perhaps even false, accrediting agencies, the Chronicle reports.

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