Budget's one-time increase in university funding welcome
TORONTO, March 22 /CNW/ - The Ontario Government's Budget infusion of
more than $200 million in operating funding to help the province's
universities cope with their burgeoning student populations is welcomed by the
province's faculty representatives. But, they warn, such one-time help will
not be enough to close the funding gap created by the previous decade's
drastic spending cuts.
"We've been very concerned about the risk to educational quality that
this gap poses," said Michael Doucet, president of the Ontario Confederation
of University Faculty Associations. "This new investment will help address
this concern, but only temporarily."
Doucet said Ontario ranks last in Canada in per student funding and also
has the worst student-faculty ratio in the country.
"The federal Budget, with its promise of an $800-million transfer to the
provinces for post-secondary education, has given Ontario the opportunity to
restore the kind of quality higher education today's students deserve and
their parents enjoyed," he said.
"We need the Ontario Government to ensure that it will use future federal
transfers to increase its current commitment to post-secondary education.
Ottawa's transfer will mean more than $1 billion in additional funding over
the next three years to hire the numbers of faculty needed to give our
students the quality education they need to prosper in today's knowledge-based
"We're looking to the McGuinty Government to secure Ontario's share of
that funding so it can top up its own investment in higher education. If that
happens," Doucet said, "the government may be able to fufil its vision of a
world-class post-secondary system."
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