Ontario’s next government needs to address colleges’ $100-million shortfall
May 30, 2018 | Canadore College
(NORTH BAY, ONT.) – Ontario’s colleges call for the next government to address a $100-million province-wide funding shortfall faced by the system.
“A college education gives students a real edge in our technology-rich and competitive economy,” said George Burton, president
A number of factors are affecting the sustainability of Ontario’s colleges, from challenging enrolment trends to cost increases related to the rate of inflation. Meanwhile, per-student provincial funding has continued to decline every year since 2007-08.
Ontario’s colleges currently receive the lowest per-student funding in Canada. The per-student revenue for colleges is also significantly lower than the amounts provided to Ontario universities and high schools.
As of today, colleges need an additional $100 million per year to maintain programs and services for students that meet the needs of employers.
While some of the cost pressures were offset this year by an increase in international students, the long-term challenge remains.
Burton says that recent government investments in areas like student mental health are only a drop in the bucket; demand far outstrips available supply.
As accelerating automation and innovations revolutionize the workplace, Ontario needs to invest even more in college education. More students need to acquire the specialized qualifications and expertise that lead to rewarding careers.
Colleges are calling for candidates in the provincial election to commit to investing in student success. Some of the options for addressing the colleges’ funding shortfall include:
- Enhancing the annual operating funding provided to colleges.
- Creating a tuition-fee framework for colleges that is distinct from the tuition framework for universities.
- Developing a targeted funding increase to expand science, technology, engineering, arts
andmath (STEAM) programs by 30 per centover the next four years.
“The chronic underfunding of
Canadore College trains people through applied learning, leadership
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