Page in partnership with Cambridge Guardian Angels
(infographic from CGA)
The legal position
Guidelines for Sponsors-For children under 18 coming to the UK to study, the Sponsor is the school, where the child is going to study.
(3.26 of Tier 4 of the Points Based System: Guidance for Sponsors)
“Sponsors who recruit a child under the age of 18 must ensure suitable arrangements are in place for them in the UK. This must include arrangements for their: a) travel; b) reception when they arrive in the UK; and c) care while in the UK.”
Why do you need a Guardian?
Guardians act on behalf of the parents, helping the student adapt to their new life. A guardian keeps in regular contact with the student during term time and assists with any problems that may arise. Suitable homestay accommodation is arranged by the guardian during holidays. A guardian will be available to both students and parents 24 hours a day in case of emergency
More information on our site about VISA’S and immigration can be found here (towards the bottom of the page).
Government information can be found here
What to do before you appoint a Guardian?
There are varying Guardianship models operating in the UK, which can make an accurate comparison of fees and services hard to achieve. A few providers will provide an ‘all in’ price, but most will charge for ‘extra’ services on the basis that different families have different needs. However, if an ‘all in price’ is not provided, we do suggest that you establish what services incur additional cost(s).
Therefore, before signing a Guardianship contract ask for a breakdown of potential extra charges and find out when they are applicable.
Extra charges can include:
– Visits to schools
– Parents evening attendances-which can be charged per child, not per visit.
– Any ‘out of hours’ activities not listed as fully inclusive in the contract
– Transfer and transport fares, usually charged ‘per car’ not ‘per child’.
– Additional ‘tutor’ costs
Host family costs might additionally include:
– Host family ‘retainer’-to cover costs relating to providing emergency hosting or for overall ‘responsibility’ of the child.
– Charge per night-(host family nightly fees currently range from £40-£65 per night, as a guide)
– Use of WiFi/heating and lighting might be charged if occupancy time exceeds what is expected.
– Provision of lunch/snacks-often considered an ‘extra’ and usually charged at between £5-£15 per day.
Agree a contract
Parents and agents should ask for a legally prepared contract which includes a complete list of all services included in the price, this should be signed by both parties.
The aim of UK Education Guide is to be independent and to promote organisations that aim to uphold high standards of care for international students.
Why appoint an AEGIS Guardian?
AEGIS is the Association for the Education and Guardianship of International Students.
AEGIS brings together schools/colleges and Guardianship Organisations to ensure and promote the welfare of international students, aged 18 or under, studying at UK schools/colleges. AEGIS provides a forum for best practice for schools/colleges and Guardianship Organisations through regular workshops and conferences. AEGIS is a registered charity.
To become a fully accredited member of AEGIS, a Guardianship Organisation must first undergo a thorough and rigorous inspection process. Accreditation will only be granted once AEGIS inspectors are satisfied that the Guardianship Organisation meets all of the AEGIS inspection criteria and standards. A condition of AEGIS membership is that once fully accredited, a Guardianship Organisation will be re-inspected every four years.