UofT students to deliver 'Stop Flat Fees' petitions

TORONTO, May 17 /CNW/ - The University of Toronto Students' Union (U.T.S.U.), Local 98 of the Canadian Federation of Students, has collected signatures from thousands of UofT stakeholders opposing the proposed flat fee tuition model for students in the Faculty of Arts and Science. The University is seeking to permanently switch from a pay-per-course model to a flat programme fee. The flat fee model unjustifiably increases tuition fees by up to 66% for an undergraduate education. In response to the outcry of the community, U.T.S.U. has delivered over 4,000 individually signed petition cards to the office of University President David Naylor.

The petition, part of a broader 'Stop Flat Fees' campaign, calls on the University Administration to take measures to ensure education is accessible, collaborate with students, staff and faculty on future proposals and see public sector funding increase.

"We want the administration to work with us to lobby for increased government funding, rather than continuing to impose fee increases for students." says Danielle Sandhu, U.T.S.U. President. With tuition fees increasing beyond the rate of inflation, students are taking on heavier financial burdens to afford an education. The campaign has gathered support not only from current students, but faculty, parents, prospective students, as well as community organizations and Union allies.

U.T.S.U. is also concerned about the University's research around the impact of flat fees on students in the University's largest faculty. During a 2009-2011 trial program, flat fees were charged to thousands of incoming students. Subsequent research was to be undertaken by the University Administration to assess the model's impact on accessibility to education, student engagement and academic performance. Less than 50 students paying a flat fee were surveyed. U.T.S.U. finds the quality of the research surprisingly inadequate for the academic institution.

The University of Toronto Students' Union is accountable to 44,000 full-time undergraduate students at the University of Toronto's St. George and Mississauga campuses.

SOURCE University of Toronto Students' Union

For further information:

Media Contacts
Danielle Sandhu, U.T.S.U. President: 647-986-2586
Shaun Shepherd, U.T.S.U. Vice-President External: 416-556-2405
Tanya Speight, U.T.S.U. Communications & Outreach Coordinator: 416-978-4911 ext 232

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