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Colorado attorney general joins lawsuit against federal officials over new rules for international students

The rules say international students aren’t eligible to stay in the U.S. if their courses move completely online.

DENVER — Eighteen attorneys general, including Phil Weiser of Colorado, are seeking to nix new federal rules that make it harder for international students to study in the U.S. this fall.

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey is leading the coalition of attorneys general, which filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The lawsuit was filed in federal court in Massachusetts.

The rules, announced last week, say international students aren’t eligible to stay in the U.S. if their courses move completely online. Under the rules, the students must maintain at least one in-person class during the fall semester. International students with F-1 and M-1 visas who are currently outside the country would not be allowed to return.

Harvard University and MIT, which have outlined plans for extensive remote learning in the fall semester, filed a lawsuit against the federal agencies last week, saying their ability to provide remote education during a global pandemic is “of paramount importance to universities across the country.” The coronavirus disease is highly contagious and spreads easily in close quarters. A hearing on the Harvard and MIT lawsuit is set for Tuesday at 3 p.m.

A total of 11,316 active international students were studying at Colorado’s 31 public and 85 private postsecondary institutions pursuant to F-1 and M-1 visas as of January of 2020, according to the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System database.

>Read more at the Denver Business Journal

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