Investment Migration – A Pathway to the Best Education Options for Your Children
One of the many advantages of investment migration is enhanced access to premium education. Children are our most precious assets and providing them with the opportunity to attend the ‘best of the best’ international schools and universities is one of the most valuable investments parents can make. As such, in the increasingly volatile times we are enduring, ensuring the best possible education for their children has become a key motivation for any parent. The post-Covid spike in demand for places at Ivy League, Oxbridge (now “Stoxbridge”), and other premium universities has seen rising interest in residence and citizenship by investment programs in countries renowned for offering the world’s top educational institutions, such as the UK, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, and several European countries. Our new Henley & Partners Education division is designed to provide clients with all the support and assistance they need to access the best schools and universities in their country of choice.
By: Dominic Volek, Group Head of Private Clients at Henley & Partners
US EB-5 investors’ children can access the highest concentration of the world’s best universities
For high-net-worth investors seeking permanent resident (‘green card’) status in the USA, the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program offers the most efficient pathway. The program sets aside EB-5 visas for participants who invest in commercial enterprises associated with government-approved regional centers based on proposals for promoting economic growth.
Foreign individuals must either invest USD 1,050,000 in a non-targeted employment area project or USD 800,000 in a targeted employment area project in a rural or high-unemployment area. The investment must be made in a new commercial enterprise and plan to create or preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified US workers. Investors’ spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age may apply for Green Cards as derivative applicants and are not required to make further financial contributions.
America is home to some of the best universities and elite schools in the world. World Population Review’s Most Educated Countries 2022 shows that the USA sits comfortably in the top 10 most educated countries. Its top private schools and Ivy League universities are extremely competitive, now seeing an increase of around 7% on applications since pre-Covid times. For example, Harvard’s 2022 acceptance rate is only 4.6%. In numbers, that translates as 42,749 applicants, of which 1,962 students were accepted. The pressure on young people to stand out is significant, and top-tier universities look for ‘well-rounded’ or ‘pointy’ applicants, namely, those who are outstanding in one particular way, such as a musician who has impressed or a scientist who has won a national award. Guidance from specialists, such as Henley & Partners Education, when considering the right schools and universities is key to maximizing a student’s chance of success.
Family members can join UK Tier 1 Innovators and enjoy premium education
For experienced entrepreneurs wishing to acquire permanent residence in the UK, the Tier 1 Innovator visa is aimed at those with proven success in starting up a new, or running an existing, viable business. Applicants must be over 18 years of age and have at least GBP 50,000 in investment funds if they want to set up a new business.
Successful innovators can stay for three years at a time and can bring their family members to the UK. After three years, they can apply to extend their stay for a further three years or to settle permanently in the UK under indefinite leave to remain.
After the USA, the UK attracts more international students than any other country. Although fees have risen and visa controls have tightened in recent years, it remains popular due to its top-quality universities, student culture in the big cities, and attractive scholarships.
The UK has one of the best higher education systems globally, valued across the world for its renowned standards and quality, and 10 of its universities featured in the top 100 in the Times Higher Education World University Ranking 2023. Its good reputation draws many international students to its shores each year — in 2020/21, 584,100 overseas students constituted 22% of the student body. Its prestige also emanates from its graduates’ success. Many eminent people in multiple fields whose work is recognized globally graduated from British universities. It is no accident, either, that London is considered the world’s capital city of higher education. With its four universities all ranked in the world’s top 50, London is the city with the most top-ranked universities in the world.
Children of Canada’s Start-Up Visa applicants can attend top-tier educational institutions
For those with Canada in their sights, the country’s Start-Up Visa Program — the first of its kind worldwide — links immigrant entrepreneurs who have proven business start-up skills and a qualifying business to experienced private sector organizations with start-up expertise.
Applicants must propose an innovative start-up business for approval by a designated organization and choose one of three support categories (all incur admin costs): business incubation (no investment required), an angel investment group (and raise a minimum of CAD 75,000 from the group), or a venture capital fund (and raise a minimum of CAD 200,000 from the fund). Upon approval of their proposal they receive a letter of support, allowing them and their families to apply directly for permanent residence before establishing their business in Canada.
Canada is consistently ranked as one of the top 10 countries in the world and boasts an education system to match. The country has become a booming hub for international students whose dreams include remaining in the country after completing their studies. Ranked 3rd among the world’s wealthiest countries in terms of quality of education, Canada is a sought-after destination for earning a degree. Unlike the UK and the USA, Canada does not have an official ranking system for its universities, however five Canadian universities rank among the top 100 in the world.
Invest in a European golden visa and your children can study anywhere in the EU once they are citizens
European residence by investment programs such as those offered by Greece, Italy, Portugal, and Spain, are extremely attractive for investors looking to secure premium education and employment opportunities for their children across the EU. Portugal’s Golden Residence Permit Program is the most popular residence program among our clientele as it provides the quickest, most defined, and now proven pathway to citizenship, subject to the eligibility criteria. As a citizen of an EU country, your child will have access to education in any of the EU countries on the same basis as domestic students.
Lisbon is host to the most top-tier international schools and universities in Portugal, but Porto and the Algarve have seen the number of schools grow in response to demand from expats and the investment migration market. There are excellent schools that teach in English, French, and German as well method schools, such as Montessori and Steiner. Families who decide to relocate to Portugal can be confident that their children will be able to receive high-quality education.
Malta is also an appealing option as its regulations provide for a residence path that may lead to the granting of Maltese citizenship through exceptional services by direct investment, and it also has a residence by investment program. The island nation boasts of a top-notch education system as it follows educational policies and programs that are on par with international standards and has good international schools. Verdala International School and QSI International School of Malta head the tables, while St. Edwards College is a private boys’ school with optional boarding for boys from the age of 11 upwards. Sixth Form students (boys and girls aged 16 to 18 are also eligible to board).
Australasia and Singapore – great options for ultra-high-net worth families
For those who prefer the sunnier climes of the southern hemisphere, Australia currently offers four visa streams under its Business Innovation and Investment Program, and its Global Talent Independent Program is a fast-track route to permanent residence for highly skilled executives, businesspeople, entrepreneurs, and professionals.
Australia has the third highest number of international students in the world after the USA and the UK — which is impressive for a nation of just 24 million people. The country offers 37 top universities, according to Times Higher Education’s World University Rankings 2023, and seven of them feature in the prestigious top 100, meaning there is no shortage of choice. The best overall is the University of Melbourne – one of only two universities in the country to make the top 50 of the overall world ranking, in 34th place. The other top 50 university is Monash University, in 44th place.
Investors can also secure residence in New Zealand, which has recently announced a new Active Investor Plus visa, designed to attract valuable investors and encourage investment that delivers benefits to the local economy, which allows visa holders to live, work, and study in the country. The quality of education in New Zealand is considered among the best in the world and receives consistently high ratings in the UN Human Development Index. Subsequently, the country has a high proportion of residents with upper secondary or tertiary qualifications. New Zealand’s education is also becoming increasingly international, influenced by wide employment markets and an increasingly mobile network of teaching staff, researchers, and a well-traveled population of students.
Singapore’s Global Investor Program is a pathway to permanent residence in a world-class destination with a harmonious multi-racial and multi-cultural community. The city-state is politically stable and economically prosperous, with a reliable healthcare system and a reputable education system that is widely praised for being highly successful and competitive. Singapore ranks highly in international league tables such as the OECD’S Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), and it also ranked in the top 10 countries with the best education systems in 2020. Recognized as a global education leader, Singapore is renowned for its consistency in producing students of the highest caliber in literacy, reading, mathematics, and science. With multiple international schools, Singapore provides an excellent environment for a child to learn and grow, and has 50,000 foreign students between the ages of 13 and 23.
Henley & Partners’ new education service offering
Owing to the rising number of clients requesting information about education as part of their application for alternative residence or citizenship, it has become clear that providing education advice is an essential service. In response, Henley & Partners recently launched a new in-house education division, headquartered in the UK. Its directors and consultants are all highly experienced headteachers, admissions directors, teachers, and educators with years of experience in primary, secondary, and tertiary education institutions.
Our network of specialist consultants in Australia, Europe, the UK, and North America offer local expert and impartial advice to global clients. This expert team will not only provide school placement and bespoke concierge services, but also a unique online evaluation of academic skills for children aged between six and sixteen — the Henley Academic Profiling Assessment — to provide a snapshot of a child’s academic skills. The results can be used to demonstrate a child’s performance to future schools as well as to monitor their academic progress and identify possible areas for improvement.
A competitive advantage for your children
Working with a team with insider knowledge of the admissions processes at the world’s most competitive schools and universities gives applicants a significant advantage. Not only does Henley & Partners Education have extensive, sector-specific international experience, but the team also has access to comprehensive global networks and the most up-to-date information. All our consultants have held leading roles in world-class primary and tertiary education institutions so they understand the processes and can navigate the systems to assist clients wanting to access the world’s leading schools and universities.
If you wish to learn more about these or any other investment migration programs, please reach out to Henley & Partners, or if you’re interested in Henley & Partners Education, you can find out more here. As the pioneering firm and global leader in residence and citizenship by investment, we are best placed to successfully serve international clients and partners interested in acquiring alternative residence and citizenship options.
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