TORONTO, Feb. 7, 2012 /CNW/ - The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) submitted its recommendations today to the Ontario government on how to strengthen its regulatory framework on tuition fees. The current regulations, set to expire this academic year, have allowed tuition fees to increase by five per cent annually for six consecutive years, making Ontario the most expensive province to study in Canada.
"For the first time in the history of the province, Ontario's students now contribute as much to the operating costs of universities as the government does," said Sean Madden, President of the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA). "At this critical juncture, students are urging the government to reduce the cap on tuition increases moving forward."
The submission, Tomorrow's Tuition: A New Framework for Affordable Higher Education, outlines students' proposals for a fair and affordable tuition framework. This includes the necessary step of limiting tuition increases to no more than inflation, while government increases per-student operating grants to cover reasonable inflationary costs. The submission also urges the government to utilize a uniform tuition cap to flatten the escalating cost disparities that exist between programs, and ensure international tuition predictability beyond the first year.
Students are also calling on the government to enforce fair tuition payment processes that would put an end to flat-fee billing and charging deferral fees to students who cannot pay their full tuition fees before the start of the first term. The new proposed regulations would require institutions to charge on a per-credit basis and at reasonable deadlines. The submission also contains a number of suggested improvements to the design and eligibility of the new Ontario tuition grant to have the maximum impact and better support high-need students.
"The government's significant investment in tuition grants will be quickly eroded if fees are allowed to increase well above inflation," continued Madden. "We are looking forward to continued work together to protect the investment and build an accessible and high quality post-secondary education system."
Copies of the submission are available on our website. The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance represents the interests of over 145,000 professional and undergraduate, full- and part-time university students from nine student associations.
For further information:
or to arrange an interview, please contact Alvin Tedjo, OUSA Director of Communications, work: (416) 341-9948, cell: (647) 669-6885, email: [email protected]