Public colleges should be publicly funded
Ontario’s public colleges play a crucial role in supporting economic growth and educating students for the jobs of tomorrow. Sadly, however, years of government under-funding have created a situation where Ontario’s public colleges now receive the least per-student funding of any province.
This is pushing colleges into questionable ventures with private colleges, corporations, and overseas campuses. In some cases, public colleges are selling or licensing their courses, video lectures, course materials and even entire programs. In others, colleges are privatizing important frontline services, such as counselling, putting at risk the quality of the supports that students rely on.
As Ontario’s colleges turn 50, we have a choice to make. Will we provide enough funding for our public colleges to do their jobs, and deliver the education Ontario students need? Or will we force our colleges to continue with an approach of privatization that’s failing students and faculty? It’s pretty clear what the right answer is – what’s less clear is why the government, and college presidents, don’t want to acknowledge it.