Over the last four years the Conservative government has slashed college and university funding by $539 million 0061002000325% cut 0061006e0064 encouraged tuition hikes to the point where average fees are now $3,564, an increase of 45%.
Those startling figures and others are contained in a newly released report entitled “Funding Crisis in Ontario’s Universities: The “Road to Prosperity” is Temporarily Closed!”
At a news conference April 29, coalition spokesperson Mikael Swayze said, “as workers in Ontario universities, we see the real effects of the underfunding daily, in huge overcrowded classes; in dirtier hallways; in the privatization of some programmes and the closure of others; in massive library backlogs and the epidemic of missing volumes.
“We also see it in the massive debt-loads borne by our students and our colleagues; in the career of the brilliant graduate students who run out of money and are forced to abandon their studies,” added Swayze.
The group was joined by the National President Judy Darcy who pointed out that the province of Ontario has, “completely deregulated graduate, professional and other programs, leading to fee increases as big as 400 % and one-year masters programs costing as much as $20,000.”
Says Darcy, “while the Harris government pays lip service to quality public education at the post-secondary level, they have promoted and funded business-oriented programs and private sector partnerships at the expense of overall program funding.”