Prevent our local maths teacher from deportation.
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Lisa Thompson, is a fully qualified full-time Maths teacher at Sandhurst secondary school. She is very passionate about her students, and goes above and beyond to ensure that they reach their full potential. Lisa is married with four children, one at University, one at Sixth form, one at Secondary, and one at a local Primary school. Since summer 2018 her husband Ronald has been working two jobs, seven days a week to help fund their daughters university education and to help pay towards their tier two visa extension. They are American citizens who have been living and contributing to the UK since August 2015.
On August 24th Lisa applied to extend her family visa, as per requirement. Paying an approximate sum of £5000 for her family to remain in the UK for a further 3 years. At the end of September Lisa started calling the home office to check on the status of the visa renewal. She was only ever allowed to leave a message with the receptionist, on numerous occasions she asked for someone to e-mail or return her call. She had been advised that the only form of communication was for her to leave a message requesting a call back. At this point Lisa was worried as Lisa had not been contacted and her VISA expired on the 23rd of September 2018.
On November 26th Lisa was notified by her daughters University that her visa had been denied, due to the original certificate of sponsorship number having been put on the application. The VISA was rejected on this basis. The new sponsorship from Bracknell Forest was a continuation of employment.
The home office letter of rejection was dated the 19th of October. This letter was posted on the 3rd December and not received until the 4th December. This was the original letter from the Home Office, as it contained the documents that Lisa had sent on August 31st. Which as a result denied her the opportunity to appeal and correct the clerical error of providing the correct certificate of sponsorship number. Because the Home Office did not notify Lisa in an appropriate time frame, she and her family are now classified as over stayers in the UK. As she has missed the 14 day appeal process, due to no fault of her own, Lisa can now no longer apply to appeal this decision nor reapply.
Her family is set to be deported on the 19th December 2018. This will leave Sandhurst school short of a Maths teacher. There is no teacher set to replace her. The secondary maths position is a UK shortage occupation. The government has missed its target for training newly qualified secondary teachers the system needs for five years in a row. The targets have gotten more and more stretching over time due to, in part, rising pupil numbers. Fewer working aged teachers are being retained, while the number of teachers reaching to retirement age, has more than halved. Retention rates of early career teachers are also lower than they were a few years age (refer to www.nfer.ac.uk ). PE teachers and older sixth formers are taking maths lessons as head teachers face unprecedented competition for qualified teachers (The Times). More than 7,500 maths teachers have no relevant qualification higher than an A level and recruitment is at crisis point. To deport Lisa, will compound the alarming figures, both nationally and locally.
Not only will losing Lisa have a detrimental impact on the staffing at Sandhurst School, but the students who have become accustomed to her help will be left distraught. One student who is going through a tremendous amount of stress, asked "Why would they get rid of Mrs. Thompson, when she is the only one that I can talk too?"
Please sign our petition to help keep our Maths teacher and her family at Sandhurst school.
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