Canada has opened its borders to international students. However, they will have to quarantine for 14 days once entering the country. Language schools, colleges, and universities are preparing for plans to quarantine their international students. These plans will have to be approved by federal and provincial authorities.
Safety for students and communities claimed
President of Universities Canada, Paul Davidson, said that they are delighted that the closure of the border has been lifted safely for students and for the communities. His organization has worked hard with the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations and the Canadian governments to control and improve the situation of international students from the early beginning of the health crisis. The Canadian government also offered some financial support and now has decided to open its borders to international students.
The situation for students differs dramatically since each region has a different level of COVID-19 status and each school has to conform to regional rules to stem the spread. Many are providing online courses and there are different degrees of face-to-face instruction.
International students are vital to Canada
International students are vital not only to universities but also to the Canada’s economy. Their presence adds $22B to the economy through such things as home rentals, car rentals, groceries purchases, and visits by parents.
They also pay much higher tuition – a boon to universities which have suffered financial difficulties over the recent years. On average, they make up about 15-25% of the university population in Canada.
Davidson confirms that there are huge advantages in having international students attend universities in Canada. They gain the experience of living in Canada. And once they graduate, they can stay in Canada to work or if they come back to their home countries, they become an ambassador for Canada. Therefore, opening the border to international students is an important signal that the country is an open and active part of the global education system.