It has been widely reported that Buckinghamshire New University has had its licence to sponsor Tier 4 international students suspended after it apparently exceeded the HTS threshold. Further information on the suspension and how it impacts students can be found here.

Tier 4 sponsors are reminded that they should continue to monitor their HTS statistics regularly. Where sudden spikes are identified in HTS stats, sponsors should investigate these immediately and take further action. In the recent case of 360 GSP College Ltd v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2015] EWHC 526 (Admin) (11 March 2015) Mrs Justice Elisabeth Laing DBE noted that:This is an area in which the Secretary of State, not the courts, has the experience and expertise necessary to decide in which cases it is appropriate to revoke a sponsor licence. This is a system in which the Secretary of State places great trust in sponsors, as sponsors issue the CAS. The courts have emphasised that the grant of a sponsor licence is a privilege: R (London St Andrews College v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2014] EWHC4328 (Admin), per McGowan J. She said (judgment, paragraph 36), "It must be understood that the grant of HTS status is a fragile gift, constant vigilance about compliance is a minimum standard required of such colleges. The burden of playing an active role in support of immigration control is a heavy one. The SSHD is entitled to review purported levels of compliance with a cynical level of supervision."

Where incorrect decisions are made by UKVI, a challenge can always be considered. Such challenges are difficult where set criteria such as HTS stats are not within the permitted percentages.