Trump admin caves to Harvard and MIT, won’t deport online-only students

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The Trump administration has rescinded a controversial policy that could have forced the deportation of foreign students who attend colleges that aren’t offering in-person classes during the coronavirus pandemic.

As we reported last week, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology sued the Trump administration to block the policy issued by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Under the policy change announced July 6, foreign students with nonimmigrant (F-1 and M-1) visas would have had to leave the United States or transfer to different schools that offer in-person classes.

But US officials agreed to rescind the new policy in a settlement with Harvard and MIT, as revealed today at a hearing on the case at US District Court for the District of Massachusetts. “At a short hearing Tuesday afternoon, US District Judge Allison Burroughs confirmed that a settlement had been reached,” The Wall Street Journal reported. “She said the government would rescind the policy, withdraw an FAQ detailing the rule and return to the status quo of guidance issued in the spring.”

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