Zealand and Canada and 18 located in the U.S. During 2017, KI English served approximately 47,000 students for in-class English-language instruction provided by Kaplan.
In January 2016, Kaplan International acquired Mander Portman Woodward (MPW), a U.K. independent sixth-form college that prepares domestic and international students for A-level examinations that control admission to U.K. universities. MPW operates three colleges in London, Cambridge and Birmingham.
Kaplan International also operates Dublin Business School in Ireland, a higher education institution, and Kaplan Open Learning in the U.K., an online learning institution. At the end of 2017, these institutions enrolled an aggregate of approximately 4,900 students.
U.K. Immigration Regulations. Certain Kaplan International businesses serve a significant number of international students; therefore, the ability to sponsor students from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland to come to the U.K. is critical to these businesses. Pursuant to regulations administered by the United Kingdom Visas and Immigration Department (UKVI), the KI Pathways business is required to hold or operate Tier 4 sponsorship licenses to permit international students to come to the U.K. to study the courses they deliver. Four of the KI English schools also have Tier 4 licenses to enable them to teach international students, although, in general, students studying the English language can choose to enter the U.K. on a student visitor visa as opposed to a Tier 4 visa.
Each Tier 4 license holder is also required to have passed the Basic Compliance Assessment (BCA) and hold Educational Oversight accreditation. Without these criteria being met, Kaplan International’s U.K. schools would not be permitted to issue a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) to potential incoming international students, which is a prerequisite to a student obtaining a Tier 4 student visa. The revised immigration rules also require all private institutions to obtain Educational Oversight accreditation. Educational Oversight requires a current and satisfactory full inspection, audit or review by the appropriate academic standards body. Failure to comply with these new rules has the potential to adversely impact the number of international students studying through Kaplan International.
For the sixth consecutive year, Kaplan International has retained 100% in Tier 4 Educational Oversight with high grades across all colleges. All Tier 4 license renewals have been approved again with high scores in the core measurable requirements.
KI English has four U.K. English-language schools listed on the Kaplan Tier 4 master license. In 2016, each of these four schools also completed annual monitoring, achieving “exceeded expectations” from the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI). As noted above, students studying the English language can choose to enter the U.K. on a student visitor visa as opposed to a Tier 4 visa.
The MPW schools have performed consistently well with good records in their Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (OFSTED) and ISI Educational Oversight inspections. The MPW schools each hold current Tier 4 licenses.
Changes continue to be made to U.K. immigration rules. The UKVI continues to tighten the regulations around sponsoring students from outside the EEA and Switzerland. Changes over the past three years have included the introduction of a rule that restricts to five years the time a sponsored student can spend studying at or above degree level in the U.K. In addition, sponsored students who do not attend an institution that qualifies as a Higher Educational Institution (HEI), which includes students attending Kaplan International colleges in the U.K., are no longer permitted to work part time while studying. In 2013, the biggest change was the introduction of a new screening process called a “Credibility Check” for potential students. This interview process can affect the number of visa refusals Kaplan International’s businesses receive, which is a risk factor for loss of the relevant license. However, Kaplan International has not experienced a significant increase in visa refusals. Since the introduction of the Points-Based System in 2009, all Tier 4 students are subject to strict checks pre- and post-arrival, including verification that their qualifications are genuine, confirmation that the students maintain a good attendance record and that they can be contacted at all times, and verification that they have academic progression and that their visa is valid at all times while they are present in the U.K. Failure to meet these requirements obligates Kaplan International to withdraw sponsorship and report these students to the UKVI. In 2014, there were additional changes to the UKVI rules, including a significant tightening of the core measurable with respect to visa refusals. Effective November 1, 2014, no more than 10% of the students to whom a CAS is issued by a Tier 4 license sponsor can have their visa refused. Formerly, the limit was set at 20%. In 2015, the Tier 4 licenses for Kaplan Financial, KI Pathways’ London College and all of KI English colleges were consolidated into one single “master” license. In June 2016, KI English reduced the number of its schools on the master license to four. The University of Nottingham International College was later added to the master license. Kaplan Financial has ceased sponsoring international students and was removed from the master license in 2017. If this license were lost, all of these colleges would lose the ability to sponsor international students. Furthermore, students applying to another education provider after completing their studies at these colleges are now required to return home to apply for a