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CAUT welcomes changes to International Student Program

(Ottawa – November 1, 2023) The Canadian Association of University Teachers (CAUT) is welcoming new measures aimed at protecting students from fraud and exploitation as outlined by the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship announced plans last week. 

“As post-secondary institutions work to grow international enrollments to make up for insufficient public funding, international students are often victims of unethical recruitment practices and inadequate supports when living in Canada. They deserve better,” said CAUT Executive Director David Robinson. 

With its new measures, the federal government is stepping away from – though not ruling out – a blanket cap on international student enrollments, as it initially floated, to focus on rooting out fraud and ensuring a higher standard of treatment for prospective international students. 

“Strengthening the International Student Program is a step in the right direction. But we also need to address tuition fees that are too high, the lack of affordable student housing, inadequate institutional support, and the lack of access to services such as health care,” said Robinson. 

CAUT continues to monitor the rollout of the proposed “recognized institution” framework that is intended to benefit designated learning institutions (DLIs) that “set a higher standard for services, support and outcomes for international students.” Questions remain about how the government will assess institutions and the data and criteria that will be used.