New Post-Secondary Education Funding Needs Accountability Mechanism



    OTTAWA, March 19 /CNW Telbec/ - The $800 million increase in federal
funding for post-secondary education, announced in today's federal budget, is
a positive step towards restoring the massive federal funding cuts from the
late 1990's. Now the federal government needs to introduce measures to ensure
that new funding is not diverted away from education by provincial
governments.
    "Although we're pleased that the federal government has recognised the
need to restore some funding for public post-secondary education; overall
funding will still be roughly $1 billion short of 1992 levels," said Amanda
Aziz, National Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. "We're also
concerned that the funding might not reach its intended target without
spending guidelines for the provinces."
    The Canadian Federation of Students has been calling on the federal
government to work with the provinces to improve the accessibility and quality
of Canada's public universities and colleges. To ensure mutual accountability,
transparency, and predictability, the Federation has called for a federal
Post-Secondary Education Act, similar to the Canada Health Act.
    "At this point there is nothing in place to prevent this funding from
being used to pave roads in Nova Scotia or fund the Olympic games in B.C.,"
said Aziz. "The federal government is using an outdated model for funding
post-secondary education that has led to 20 years of underfunding."
    Students were also disappointed to see no plan from the government for
replacing the failed Millennium Scholarship Foundation, the mandate of which
is due to expire in 2009. The Canadian Federation of Students has been calling
for a national system of needs-based grants to replace the flawed Millennium
funding program.

    The Canadian Federation of Students is an alliance of more than 80
university and college student associations with a combined membership of over
one-half million students.




For further information:

For further information: Amanda Aziz, National Chairperson, (613)
232-7394 x21, (cell) 613-261-7528; Ian Boyko, Government Relations
Coordinator, (613) 232-7394 x22, (cell) 613-261-7939

Organization Profile

CANADIAN FEDERATION OF STUDENTS - OTTAWA

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