Financial Assistance Must be Improved to Address Rising Costs of Education

OTTAWA, Sept. 12, 2012 /CNW/ - The Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) is calling on the federal government to improve financial assistance for students following the announcement of a 5% increase in average undergraduate tuition for 2012/2013.

Statistics Canada announced today that full-time students in undergraduate programs are paying 5.0% more on average for tuition in Canada. This amounts to an average increase of $268 per student, bringing average undergraduate tuition in Canada to $5,581.  Graduate students saw a 4.5% increase to an average of $5,695 per student.

"Government needs to do better for students," said Zachary Dayler, National Director of CASA. "Students are facing increased challenges at a time when our country needs post-secondary graduates the most."

From July 2011 to July 2012 the Consumer Price Index measured inflation in Canada at just 1.3%. Statistics Canada has also reported that over the summer only 47.9% of students aged 15-24 were able to find work, down from the summer before.

"To grow the economy Canada needs more educated people with less debt," continued Dayler. "The cost of a high quality education has continued to increase, but per-student funding for the Canada Student Grants Program has not increased since 2009."

It is estimated that by 2017 a university education will be required for 75% of new jobs. During the last recession 390,000 jobs were created for post-secondary graduates in Canada compared to a loss of 433,000 jobs for those with lower educational attainment.

CASA encourages the government to increase funding for the Canada Student Grants Program. This program helps 245,000 students from low and middle-income families by providing non-repayable grants.

The Canadian Alliance of Student Associations is a non-partisan, not-for-profit organization that represents over 300,000 post-secondary students from coast to coast. We advocate for a Canadian post-secondary education system that is accessible, affordable, and of the highest quality.

SOURCE: CANADIAN ALLIANCE OF STUDENT ASSOCIATIONS

For further information:

To arrange an interview with Zachary Dayler, CASA National Director, please contact:                                                      
Rob LeForte, Government Relations Officer
government@casa.ca
Office: 613-236-3457 ext. 221
Mobile: 613-720-5726

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CANADIAN ALLIANCE OF STUDENT ASSOCIATIONS

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