Toronto, ON – Today’s release of the 2019 provincial budget promises higher student debt and unprecedented challenges for campuses across Ontario.

The dramatic shift in the college and university funding formulas will see the amount of outcomes-based funding for institutions increase from 1.2-1.4 per cent in 2018-19 to 60 per cent in 2024-25. The concept of outcomes-based funding has been widely criticized by students, faculty and institutions throughout multiple rounds of consultations dating back to 2010.

“Once again, the Ford government has ignored the majority of people in this province who oppose their harmful and ill-conceived changes to our education system,” said Nour Alideeb, Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario. “This budget will leave students with more debt and fewer services as a result of the Premier’s politically-motivated attack on democratic students’ unions.”

Highlights of the budget include:

  • A new framework for charging non-academic student fees, known as the Student Choice Initiative, intended to defund democratic student organizations;
  • More than $670 million dollars in cuts to student financial assistance; and
  • Extraordinary changes to the college and university funding formulas, which will tie 60 per cent of institutional funding to performance based-outcomes.

“This new funding model throws caution to the wind with the future of our post-secondary education system. Forcing colleges and universities to compete for the majority of their funding poses a huge risk to many post-secondary institutions, particularly in remote and northern communities, as well as smaller campuses, who will be at a huge disadvantage,” said Alideeb.

“This government is creating a system of winners and losers. Students are determined to keep fighting alongside this growing movement who opposes the Ford government’s plan to gamble with our future.”

The Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario is the oldest and largest student organization in Ontario, representing over 350,000 college and university students in every region of the province.


For more information:

Nour Alideeb, Chairperson, at 416-925-3825

Ian McRae, Government Relations and Policy Coordinator, at 416-925-3825 or 306-852-0128