October 20th, 2023
OUSA releases policy paper titled “Tuition”
TORONTO, ON - The Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) is proud to release the third policy paper approved by OUSA’s Fall 2022 General Assembly, Tuition. The paper was written, approved, and published by students to express their concerns and offer recommendations regarding measures that actively improve the provincial tuition framework and its implications on student affordability.
“Advocating for a more sustainable tuition structure is essential in ensuring all students can access and afford post-secondary education in Ontario,” says Anthony Coulter, Trent Durham Student Association’s Vice-President of University Affairs. “We must continually work towards improving the financial accessibility of post-secondary education through student-focused and financially sustainable policy.”
The provincial government and institutions have the ability to increase the financial accessibility of post-secondary education through affordable tuition for all students, including professional, international, and out-of-province students, improved tuition breakdowns, and fee transparency. Students across all socio-economic statuses would benefit from greater institutional and government support and a deeper understanding of how post-secondary payment processes work.
Due to the erosion of public funding, post-secondary students across disciplines feel the strain created by overreliance on tuition. Students are concerned about the financial burden of unregulated tuition on international students, the uneven fee distribution across disciplines, the high cost of professional degrees, and the lack of transparency institutions exercise. To address these concerns, students have put forth recommendations to improve the tuition costs for all students, as well as the framework’s long-term transparency and sustainability.
“Students are still feeling the impacts of the 2019 tuition framework four years later, as the changes in their fees had affected the quality of services available to them at their institutions,” Ana Tremblay, former Vice President of Education at Laurentian University’s Students’ General Association “The provincial government has the responsibility to work with institutions to create sustainable funding practices that will support the educational and extracurricular needs of students across the province. We are hopeful that the provincial government will show its commitment to post-secondary education through a refreshed funding structure and proactive policy directives.”
This policy paper and its recommendations were developed by students at OUSA’s member schools. It was passed on October 30, 2022, at OUSA’s Fall General Assembly, held at Laurentian University.
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OUSA represents the interests of 160,000 professional and undergraduate, full-time and part-time university students at nine student associations across Ontario. Our vision is for an accessible, affordable, accountable, and high quality post-secondary education in Ontario.
Tiffany Li Wu
Operations & Communications Coordinator
Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance