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Tuition increases ruled out as a way to help post-secondary finances, Ford says

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. — Ontario Premier Doug Ford says he has completely ruled out tuition fee increases as a way to ease financial struggles faced by the province’s colleges and universities.

He said late last month that he did not want to raise tuition, but went further today, saying “that’s right,” when a reporter asked if he had totally ruled it out.

Ford’s government cut tuition by 10 per cent in 2019 for Canadian students and froze it.

The tuition cut and freeze combined with low levels of provincial funding to post-secondary institutions forced many schools to look for different revenue streams, increasing reliance on international students, who pay much higher tuition. 

Ford says today that he was “caught off guard” by a federal government announcement of a cap on international students’ study permits that will see Ontario’s allotment of new visas cut in half.

A government-commissioned panel last year recommended the province unfreeze tuition, raise student aid and increase operating grants to the schools.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 13, 2024.

The Canadian Press

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