International students on a student or tier 4 visa will have to check-in on campus twice a week as of this semester.
The twice weekly check-ins, done at several locations across campus, occur alongside check-ins at in-person taught sessions. Questions have been raised at the Students’ Union about whether this constitutes “overcompliance” with new government regulations.
In addition, some schools will ask students to check-in at specific times, with others stating students must drop in at two times on different days between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday.
The check-ins must occur every week “during term time.” The Students’ Union have raised further questions on what this means for student travel and have asked the University for a timeframe for such measures.
In a recent email to SoSS students, the measures were described as “temporary.”
The student support website cites UK Visas and Immigration restrictions alongside the impact of the recent cyber incident as reasons for the regular, and in-person, check-ins.
Olivia, a third-year international student, said that she was “very disappointed by the new attendance system” as she would have to go “out of [her] way” amidst a busy timetable.
She went on to say that the changes were “incredibly frustrating and inconvenient for the University’s large population of international students.”
Robbie Beale, Activities & Culture Officer at the Students’ Union, said:
This is an issue that we have been in communication on every day this week. I was due to have a meeting with relevant University staff this morning [October 6] in order to focus in on visa and immigration restraints in particular, to try to get to the bottom of why these measures have manifested in this way. The meeting was cancelled so I am currently trying to re-arrange for the beginning of next week, whilst exploring other avenues.
The University of Manchester has been contacted for comment.