After two long years of consultations and research, the Minister of Advanced Education has tabled a bill to bring much-needed changes to Alberta's post-secondary education.
Bill 19: An Act to Improve the Affordability and Accessibility of Post-Secondary Education focuses on the affordability, accessibility, and quality of post-secondary education in Alberta's post-secondary institutions.
If passed, it would also be the first time in Alberta's history the Minister would be able to regulate tuition and mandatory non-instructional fees to ensure fairness for students. It would also give students a stronger voice in decisions that impact their education.
It would also improve the predictability of costs for international students.
The Minister of Advanced Education, Marlin Schmidt, says, "an international student will know at the beginning of their studies what the total cost of their education is going to be and they won't be subject to the year to year fluctuations that they've seen to date in Alberta."
Schmidt says, "two years is a significant amount of work to put into a bill and we're very pleased to table it."
In addition, the framework would also pave the way for government to:
- Cap each institution’s average tuition and apprenticeship fee increases to the Consumer Price Index.
- Provide increased predictability for international students.
- Allow the minister to regulate mandatory non-instructional fees and international student tuition.
- Empower students to have more say over exceptional tuition and fee increases.
Schmidt says, "this system that we're putting in place protects affordability for students and limits cost increases for tax payers of Alberta at universities and colleges, so we believe that it protects everyone fairly."
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