ICE Rescinds Policy Restricting Students in F-1 Status from Attending Online Courses

July 17, 2020

On July 14th, various news sources announced that an agreement had been reached between major universities and the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) regarding a new policy that would have prohibited foreign nationals in F-1 student status from attending online courses while in the United States. This policy retracted an earlier temporary policy that allowed F-1 students to attend courses that were taught completely online, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The new policy was widely criticized as running contrary to measures adopted by most universities to prevent the spread of the COVID-19, and caused significant disruption for foreign students, U.S. universities, and U.S. employers who hire foreign student interns and trainees. According to the news sources, ICE has agreed to rescind this policy for the upcoming school year. ICE also updated its COVID-19 FAQs to reflect this policy change. 

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