NDP Education Plan Focuses on Federal Leadership

    OTTAWA, Sept. 28 /CNW Telbec/ - Students welcome the proposal by the New
Democratic Party of Canada to introduce a Post-Secondary Education Act to
oversee federal funding increases to the provinces.
    "Canada has a national vision for healthcare enshrined in the Canada
Health Act. It is long overdue to have the same leadership and vision for
post-secondary education," said Katherine Giroux-Bougard, National Chairperson
of the Canadian Federation of Students.
    "Post-secondary education is a shared jurisdiction, and there should be a
guiding framework for how the federal government collaborates with the
premiers to improve the affordability and quality of universities and
colleges," added Giroux-Bougard.
    In addition to a Post-Secondary Education Act, the NDP platform outlines
a new $1000 grant for student loan recipients and targeted support for health
professionals and students in co-op terms. The NDP also promises to increase
core funding in a dedicated transfer for post-secondary education.
    "Students and their families need protection from tuition fee increases.
Grants combined with increased federal funding for universities and colleges
is a balanced plan," said Giroux-Bougard. "Without funding to cap tuition
fees, federal student aid is undermined each year."
    During the lifespan of the Millennium Scholarship Foundation (1998 to
2008), tuition fee increases eroded the value of their grants by over $1,000
(33%). Tuition fees have doubled over the past 15 years, and average student
debt is as high as $28,000 in some provinces.
    The Canadian Federation of Students is Canada's largest students'
organisation. It is composed of more than 80 university and college students'
associations with a combined membership of over one-half million students.

For further information:

For further information: Katherine Giroux-Bougard, National Chairperson,
(613) 232-7394; Ian Boyko, Government Relations Coordinator: (613) 232-7394,
ext. 22

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