Make Post-Secondary Education More Affordable: FPSE Puts Its Support behind National Day of Action by Students
"We know post-secondary education is a key to building a better BC, so why don't we make it more accessible," said Cindy Oliver, President of the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators. "Tuition fees in BC have skyrocketed over the last decade and undermined what should be a more accessible and affordable public good; post-secondary education," Oliver added. Oliver's comments came as FPSE announced its support for the National Day of Action organized by the Canadian Federation of Students, an event designed to mobilize greater public support for changing the affordability barriers of high tuition fees.
"There has been considerable research done already that shows record high tuition fees are forcing the current generation of students to pay far more for their post-secondary education than has ever been the case in either BC or Canada," Oliver noted. "Imposing that heavy financial burden on today's students only guarantees that student debt loads will continue to increase and ultimately prevent thousands of students from either starting or completing their post-secondary education," Oliver stressed.
"Moreover, a recent study by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) showed that the public treasury is more than compensated by investing in post-secondary education," Oliver said. "The study-Paid in Full-showed how post-secondary education translates into higher incomes which, in turn, mean greater tax revenues for government. Instead of making post-secondary education more expensive for students the study shows we need to make it a lot more affordable. Lowering tuition fees would be a logical first step in that commitment," Oliver added.
"Our members have a long history of supporting the student movement in Canada because we share many of the same values and objectives. We both believe that post-secondary education needs to become more of a right, not a privilege. We both see the long term value to individuals and society as a whole when citizens are able to better access post-secondary learning opportunities. Those beliefs are central to the National Day of Action campaign and central to our support for this important event," Oliver concluded.
The Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of BC is the provincial voice for faculty and staff in BC teaching universities, colleges and institutes, and in private sector institutions. FPSE member locals, represented by Presidents' Council and the Executive, represent over 10,000 faculty and staff at 18 public and 12 private sector institutions.