Created 20 February 2006 17:02
VICTORIA – With the release of the 2006 Budget, BC’s university professors today gave the Provincial Government B’s and some C’s for its performance in building a high-quality, broadly accessible post-secondary education system.
“The Government has improved its performance in a few areas, but has not shown much progress in others,” said Norma Wieland, President of the Confederation of University Faculty Associations of BC (CUFA/BC). “The Government has a lot of potential, but it needs to work harder if it wants to get to the top of the class.”
According to the professors, the BC Government gets a B+ in post-secondary ‘Economics’ by improvements in matching the supply of post-secondary spaces to student demand. However, the Province only receives a C in ‘Sociology’ for its lack of effort to make post-secondary education more accessible through improvements in student financial assistance.
“The Government seems to understand that the future of the province depends on well-educated people, but is still lagging in making post-secondary opportunities available to all British Columbians,” Wieland said. “For example, although they have increased funding for student financial assistance in this budget, they are still behind the 2003/04 level.”
The Professors gave the BC Government a B- for its performance on ‘Research Methods’ mainly due to a lack of funding for graduate student spaces.
“The Government will make a significant investment in applied research next year, but this is one-time money,” Wieland said. “They are still lagging in supporting basic research and providing the necessary funding for graduate student spaces to stimulate a creative economy.”
CUFA/BC represents 4,100 university professors, instructors, librarians and other academic staff at SFU, UBC, UBC-Okanagan, UNBC, UVic and Royal Roads University.
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For further information contact: Robert Clift, Executive Director, (604) 817-1649 (24 Hours)