UK work visas for foreign graduates to be extended to two years

International students are to be offered a two-year work visa after graduating from a British university, the government announced in September, overturning a key plank of Theresa May’s restrictive immigration policies.
Currently, graduates with bachelors or master’s degrees are allowed to look for work for only four months. From next year all international graduates could qualify for a two-year period to work in the UK, increasing their chances of finding long-term employment after studying.

A level results

A level results came out last week.  The overall pass rate remains the same as last year at 97.6% for students in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Girls narrowly reclaimed the lead from boys, with 25.5% achieving A* and A grades compared with 25.4% of boys.  The figures, released by the Joint Council for Qualifications, also show that – for the first time – the number of girls taking the three sciences has overtaken boys at 50.3% compared with 49.6%. There has been a big push to increase the take-up of sciences among girls.  Although far more boys – 30,159 – still took physics A-level, compared with 8,799 girls.  Six weeks after the last A-level exams were taken, more than 300,000 18-year-olds have ended the anxious wait to learn their A-level results.

We look at different scenarios

Top schools drop Common Entrance

The Common Entrance received press attention recently when three top independent schools announced that they are dropping the 13+ Common Entrance exam in a bid to reduce pressure on pupils, parents and teachers.

Westminster, St Paul’s and Wellington College will stop requiring pupils to take the exam from 2021. They will instead rely solely on their “pre-test”, which comprises verbal and non-verbal reasoning, maths and English, and is taken at the age of ten and 11.

Enrich your life

Additional academic programmes or Summer courses can help children further their skills, providing students with  the chance to focus on their skills and their individual strong points.  Learning in the classroom can give children a fantastic grounding when it comes to basic educational needs, but additional academic enrichment programmes can give students a better understanding of critical thinking, give them chance to excel in a particular subject or area, and can give students a more rounded education in general.


Choosing a programme

There will be an enrichment programme/summer course out there to suit every need and topic, so you need to look at your child’s wants and needs before booking onto one. For example, if they excel in the performing arts, it may be worth booking them onto a course that gives them opportunities in the arts that they wouldn’t normally get in the school/classroom – you may find a course that has specialists in Musical theatre and Broadway experts come in to teach, giving them access to something they’d never get in the classroom environment. If your child loves sports and challenges, a summer sport camp will be a great way for them to enhance their life experience and make friends outside the classroom.

Book review: Watching the English by Kate Fox and hot summer deals from the language schools

Looking  for a good book to read? In our February newsletter we want to tell our readers
about the international bestseller “Watching the English”.

In this book anthropologist Kate Fox takes a revealing look at the quirks, habits and foibles of the English people. She has not only compiled a comprehensive list of English qualities, she has examined them in depth and wondered how we came to acquire them. Take the weather, which is where she starts, perhaps because it is where most English conversation begins. Yet, according to Fox, we are not really interested in whether it might brighten up before lunch, we are filling in awkward conversational space. The phrase “Ooh, isn’t it cold” is merely a more acceptable way of saying “I’d like to talk to you — will you talk to me?”

Oxford University interview questions: Would you pass the test?

The University of Oxford has released a sample of interview questions – including what a rock looks like and how you listen to music – to help students who want to study at the top institution.

Among the list of questions are: “What can historians not find out about the past?”, “Is religion of value whether or not there is a God?” and “How can we estimate the mass of the atmosphere?”.

Prospective earth sciences students could be asked what a rock which is handed to them looks like, meanwhile chemistry candidates are asked to calculate how many different molecules can be made from six carbon atoms and 12 hydrogen atoms

In efforts to make the interview process more transparent, the prestigious university has released advice on how to answer the example questions just days after the deadline for applications closed.

Dr Samina Khan, director of admissions and outreach, said: “Interviews will be an entirely new experience for most students, and we know many prospective applicants are already worried about being in an unfamiliar place and being questioned by people they have not met.”

She added: “We want to underscore that every question asked by our tutors has a purpose, and that purpose is to assess how students think about their subject and respond to new information or unfamiliar ideas”.

“No matter what kind of educational background or opportunities you have had, the interview should be an opportunity to present your interest and ability in your chosen subject, since they are not just about reciting what you already know.”

Visiting a school: First impressions that can last a lifetime

Many schools open their doors in the autumn.  School open days are the first step in a relationship that will shape your child’s future.

An Open Day gives an invaluable opportunity to look around the school, absorb the atmosphere and meet the Head, staff and pupils.  It provides an insight into the interaction of staff and pupils and also the relationship between the pupils and their peers.  Current work by pupils will be on show and demonstrations of practical work in drama, music, games, technology and science may be given too.

What are the benefits of Single Sex Schools?

Few would dispute that boys and girls are wired differently and consequently develop both physically and emotionally at different speeds, have different learning styles, as well as diverse motivations. Building confidence and self-esteem are key factors to attaining success in a child’s education. It is not hard, therefore, to comprehend why children in single sex schools thrive, since they are studying in an environment which recognises these differences and is consequently tailor-made in terms of educational setting and atmosphere.

Award Nomination

We are pleased to announce that our company was shortlisted for the Relocate Awards in the Employee & Family Support category (Re:locate magazine).  The Relocate Awards recognise excellence and reward best practice.  This nomination recognises our professionalism in helping families find the best educational solutions and our exceptional customer service.

Caring for your children in the UK

Many parents who plan to send their children to study in the UK are not aware of the concept of educational guardianship and the requirements of the British law. International educational company Best Start Education provides a highly personalised level of service covering all aspects of education in the UK, including guardianship services. We receive many questions from parents about the safeguarding of their children whilst they are living away from home. Here we present FAQs about education guardianship for international students to make it easier for parents who plan to invest in their child’s education in the UK.