Fanshawe College at 1001 Fanshawe College Blvd in London. (File photo by Miranda Chant, Blackburn News)Fanshawe College at 1001 Fanshawe College Blvd in London. (File photo by Miranda Chant, Blackburn News)

Colleges call for provincial supports, end of tuition freeze

Ontario's colleges want an immediate end to the province's tuition freeze, a five per cent tuition increase, and enhanced investments in public college students.

The colleges' call for improved investments follows last week's release of a report by a panel of experts on financial stability in post-secondary education.

"Students throughout Ontario must continue to have access to high-quality programs," said Marketa Evans, the president and CEO of Colleges Ontario. "These investments in student success will help ensure Ontario's future workforce has the expertise to succeed in a rapidly evolving labour market."

Tuition at Ontario's public college was cut in 2019 and has been frozen ever since. The average annual tuition for a full-time Ontario college diploma student is approximately $2,700 per year, which is the second lowest tuition cost in Canada.

According to a statement from Colleges Ontario, public colleges currently lose money on every domestic student they serve.

The colleges are calling for:

  • An immediate end to the tuition freeze and approval of a five per cent increase in public college tuition for September 2024

  • Increased provincial investment in public college students through a 10 per cent increase in operating grants for September 2024

  • The creation of a distinct tuition policy for public colleges that addresses the long-standing inequities between college and university education

  • Lifting the cap on high-demand programs to allow more students to enroll in programs where there is high demand for graduates in the labour market.

  • Common-sense changes to create more opportunities for people to study part-time.

"Investing in public college students is key to Ontario's economic future," Evans said. "To strengthen our economy and help more people find rewarding careers, we must get this right."

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