TORONTO, Feb. 15, 2012 /CNW/ - Ontario universities appreciate the focus
on postsecondary education issues provided by the Commission on the Reform of Ontario's Public Services, welcoming particularly the Commission's support for sufficient tuition
revenue so that universities can continue to maintain the quality of
the student experience.
"The Commission has emphasized that the province's economic growth and
competitiveness depends on a strong postsecondary sector, which
confirms the importance of the government's commitment to fund 41,000
new spaces for university students over the next five years," says
Alastair Summerlee, Chair of the Council of Ontario Universities (COU)
and President of the University of Guelph. "Through our own commitment
to student success, quality and efficiency, Ontario universities will
provide Ontario with talented graduates for the workforce and conduct
research that drives economic and social change."
Currently, over 70 per cent of new jobs require postsecondary education,
with a growing number requiring a university credential. Universities
provide their graduates with the critical and analytical skills that
are valuable to employers across all sectors and that are suited for
the jobs of today and of the future.
As the Drummond report states, "The PSE system has produced impressive
results despite significant challenges". . . including absorbing a 36
per cent enrolment increase in colleges and universities since 2002-03
while improving degree completion rates.
"The Drummond report has drawn attention to the need for efficiency in
the broader public sector and universities are actively engaged in
doing this," says Bonnie Patterson, COU President and CEO.
"Universities are finding efficiencies by sharing best practices and
participating in over 45 group purchasing schemes to leverage best
prices. Universities are also containing costs by sharing services
through a common application centre, a document and library transfer
system, and a provincial online research portal. We are committed to
"The quality of students' educational experience remains the primary
focus of our universities," says Patterson. "Many steps have been taken
to enhance the attraction and retention of students by implementing a
new Quality Assurance Framework, defining learning outcomes so students
and others know what knowledge and skills they acquire from their
degrees, and drawing attention inside and outside the academy to
innovations in teaching."
COU will be reviewing the entire report and looks forward to discussing
it with the government in the coming weeks.
Visit the Council of Ontario Universities website at www.cou.on.ca
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SOURCE Council of Ontario Universities
For further information:
Senior Director, Communications and Public Affairs
416-979-4341 or 416-707-6787