Brexit Consequences, Effects And Impact On Students In School Education

By Ekene Ifechukwu

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December 26, 2019

Brexit Consequences, Effects And Impact On Students In School Education | How Will Brexit Impact On Education System In Uk?| Providing Information About School System For Sustainable Future World And Better Life

A BREXIT DEAL NEARING

The United Kingdom (UK) is due to leave the European Union (EU) on 31st January 2020 following the remarkable victory of Boris Johnson-led Conservative Party in the British general elections. It has been after three years and a half UK voted to exit the EU in a referendum bringing to an end 47 years of economic and political relationship of British and 28 EU countries.

A no-deal situation that has characterised the negotiation period has brought the transition period to a stand-still so far but with Boris Johnson’s landslide victory in the UK general election, a deal may be struck on or before the exit deadline. If Brexit deal happens, what impact will it have on students in UK? How will it affect education system in UK?

Despite the uncertainty surrounding Brexit with respect to UK Education,  the change would undoubtedly have a far-reaching impact the UK Education System even for EU and international students.  There have been speculations about what would become of the UK schools, colleges and universities in the long-term. How would students of different categories – university, college, sixth form age, adult learners, and apprentices adapt comfortably to one of the most (if not the most) important constitutional shake-up the history of UK? Can the information to be shared provide stakeholders in the school system useful enough to foster a sustainable future and better life?

Questions about Brexit consequences on school system have lingered since June 2016. And as Brexit looms closer, the answers to such questions still seem further away than ever. It is not surprising that students and their parents feel stuck in a state of limbo and remain overly anxious for clarity. The following are worth considering for discussions concerning the impact of Brexit on UK students in school education system.

  • UK education system likely to lose many school children

  • Qualification for Teaching professionals

  • Is it an end to school trips?

  • Free academic movement likely to end?

  • Teachers’recruitment

  • Teaching staff

UK SCHOOLS WILL LIKELY LOSE MANY SCHOOL CHILDREN

It is estimated that there are over 700,000 school children in UK schools who have at least on parent as an EU national. These parents have their jobs set for relocation from London to the EU, especially those in financial services industry because of unfavourable immigration arrangements such as in cross-border trading, nationality status.  Would they leave their children in British independent schools when they leave to work in home or foreign countries in that circumstance? I don’t think so.

QUALIFICATIONS FOR TEACHING PROFESSIONAL

The UK has recognised over 142,000 EU professional qualifications since 1995 – a figure that outnumbers that of the UK recognised in the EU by more than five times. Since the UK Government will likely discontinue from recognising the professional qualification any more after 31st December, 2020, would qualified UK individuals with teaching qualifications be enough to replace the number of EU nationals that would be affected due to lack of recognition?

IS IT AN END TO SCHOOL TRIPS?

British students have enjoyed free academic movement one of which is in the name of overseas school trips since the UK’s admission into the European Economic Community (EEC) took effect in January 1973.  Such educational trips had been providing students with transformational cultural experiences in new environments and for forging vital teacher-student relationship. Post-Brexit immigration laws may offer logistical obstacles that could discourage schools from embarking on such trips to EU countries.

FREE ACADEMIC MOVEMENT LIKELY TO END

Upon leaving the EU can result in overturning freedom of movement of academic workers – the free movement of workers enactment enshrined under EU Single European Act (SEA) in 1992.

The British academic workers may not be issued full visas to travel across EU borders. UK students may have to apply for study visa in order to study in any EU member country. UK student would become third-country nationals and would no longer enjoy outright admission rights.

TEACHERS’ RECRUITMENT

Having established that the protection rights for teaching staff is still intact until 31st December, 2020, it is likely that the current shortage of teachers will worsen after Brexit. The workers’ protection rights include annual, parental and maternity leave; health and safety requirements; holiday pay and rest breaks and legislation against discrimination and/or harassment.

The UK Department of Education has missed its teachers’ recruitment target for five years running, and the current lack of homegrown teachers requires schools to look further into related fields for new employees.

The post-Brexit £30,000 immigrant salary threshold applicable to EU experienced workers as well as budget cut trend in UK schools makes it more difficult to employ teachers from EU because it is not economically viable. Though it would appear easier to recruit from non-EU international workers but the issue of qualification would be a hindrance.

TEACHING STAFF

If the eventual outcome of Brexit deal warrants withdrawal of EU teachers from their jobs in UK due to relocation, whichever economic and political reasons, British schools would lack teaching staff especially in subjects that are difficult to recruit for and have declining take-up rates like foreign languages.

The British Government need to strike a new deal with EU Education System to protect British teachers teaching in the EU beyond 2020, otherwise they may have to reapply for the jobs as international workers and then the jobs will be no more guaranteed in that case.

Ekene Ifechukwu

Ekene Ifechukwu is education writer. He has over 7 years experience in teaching and tutoring. He has taught in primary and secondary schools. He has affection for training children and young people. He aims at improving other people's lives through education.

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