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With PSE funding, Ontario treads water…at the bottom of the ocean

Friday, June 15th, 2012

June 14, 2012
For 2010-11, per student funding was 34 per cent lower than in the rest of Canada, the same gap as 2009-10. Ontario remains dead last in terms of public operating funding per student… The latest provincial budget promises to maintain support for enrolment increases through a separate funding envelope, even as it calls for funding reductions in other areas. But without increases to base operating funding, the net effect – especially after adjusting for inflation – will be to reduce the level of per student funding further.

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On student-to-faculty rations, Ontario goes from worst to even worse

Friday, April 27th, 2012

April 26, 2012
Since the mid-1990s, Ontario has had the worst student-to-faculty ratio in Canada. While the number of students per full-time faculty member in other provinces hovered around 20-1, the Ontario ratio rose from 22-1 in the fall of 2000 to 27-1 by 2005-06 as the “double cohort” entered the university system… Even if universities hired as many full-time faculty as they planned in their Multi-Year Accountability Agreements (and the evidence to date suggests they have not), the ratio is now approaching 28 students for each full-time faculty member… to preserve the quality of higher education in Ontario, we need to hire new full-time faculty – and we need to start doing it now.

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Calling a cut an ‘increase’

Friday, April 6th, 2012

April 5, 2012
Per student funding has in fact been in decline since the financial crisis hit in 2008-09. The budget does nothing to help. By 2014-15, OCUFA projects that public operating funding for universities will drop by 16 per cent. This is a huge loss in revenue that, if left unfilled, will damage the quality of higher education in Ontario. History tells us that institutions will attempt to fill the gap with higher tuition fees, continuing the unsustainable shift of costs onto students.

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OCUFA analysis of the Drummond Report: all cuts, no substance

Friday, February 24th, 2012

Feb. 23, 2012
On the commission’s own assumptions and proposals – 1.7 per cent annual enrolment growth, 1.9 per cent annual inflation, and 1.5 per cent annual increases in post-secondary funding – per student funding will decline by 12 per cent between now and 2017-18… inflation-adjusted provincial funding per college student could fall by $790, and per undergraduate student could decline by almost $940. For graduate students, the reduction could be $2,280.

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OCUFA to Drummond: You can’t drive Ontario forward on a half-empty tank

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

Feb. 16, 2012
Drummond’s chief recommendation is that government funding of universities and colleges be limited to 1.5 per cent per year… this is an effective cut to higher education funding that does not keep pace with enrolment or inflation. Ontario’s universities already receive 25 per cent less per-student funding than they did in 1990; Drummond’s recommendations will make this under-funding even worse.

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Higher education brings security, higher wages, especially for men

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

Dec. 14, 2011
The relative earnings of those with a university education in Canada and Ontario are higher than the OECD average, but the degree of difference varies by age and gender… In Ontario, the apparent value of a university education is much greater for men than for women: compared to their male counterparts with high school or non-post-secondary qualifications, men with higher education earn 150 per cent more, while women have a 68 per cent earnings edge. And women with higher education still earn only 61 per cent of what men with a comparable education make.

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OCUFA’s Adamson responds to Globe and Mail columnist Wente

Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

Dec. 7, 2011
Ms. Wente is dead wrong when she claims that the rising cost of tuition is due to unfunded pension liabilities. Tuition has gone up because governments are no longer funding higher education adequately, and students have been asked to pick up the slack. Per-student government funding in Ontario is now 25 per cent less than it was in 1990. Over the same period, enrolment has increased by nearly 60 per cent. It doesn’t take a math major to figure out why students are paying more.

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Ontario’s PSE record is world class

Wednesday, December 7th, 2011

Dec. 7, 2011
Ontario’s attainment rate for higher education has risen from 44 per cent in 1999 to a 56 per cent in 2009… Ontario’s – and Canada’s – higher attainment rates are mostly owing to the number of people who have completed college… But Ontario’s 28 per cent university attainment is also higher than the OECD’s 21 per cent average… the rate at which first-time university students are graduating is four percentage points higher in Ontario than the OECD. The OECD graduation rate for those with advanced research degrees (typically doctorates), however, is 1.5 per cent, compared to 1.2 per cent in Ontario.

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Ottawa needs to step up to PSE plate, too

Thursday, November 24th, 2011

November 23, 2011
Since the late 1990s, full-time enrolment at colleges and universities has increased 25 per cent. Enrolment in graduate studies soared 42 per cent between 1998 and 2008. But federal funding for postsecondary education has decreased dramatically since the late-1970s. The Canada Social Transfer gives money to the provinces but does not require them to use federal postsecondary funding for postsecondary purposes… The CFS’s central recommendation is for the federal government to bring in a Post-Secondary Education Act modeled after the Canada Health Act.

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Reality Check: Why Unions Still Matter

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

October 19, 2011
A recently published study shows that “the decline of organized labor explains a fifth to a third of the growth in [American] inequality”. The latest U.S. census data, coupled with an historical analysis showing declining union membership coinciding with middle-income earners’ decreasing share of aggregate income, demonstrate just how relevant unions remain.

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