Oct. 31, 2018

UCalgary supports Government of Alberta's new Bill 19

An Act to Improve the Affordability and Accessibility of Post-Secondary Education

The Government of Alberta introduced Bill 19 – An Act to Improve the Affordability and Accessibility of Post-Secondary Education, on Oct. 29, 2018. The bill is a positive step forward for students and post-secondary institutions in Alberta, and reflects the extensive consultation that the government undertook across the post-secondary system.

“We are very pleased that with this legislation, the Government of Alberta is providing a framework for tuition that is stable and predictable, which is critical to maintaining a sustainable, accessible, affordable and quality post-secondary system for Alberta students,” said President Elizabeth Cannon. “In particular, I would like to thank Marlin Schmidt, Minister of Advanced Education, for responding to the needs of students and our institutions.”

The new tuition framework caps tuition increases to the Consumer Price Index beginning in the 2020-21 academic year; provides predictability to international students for the full cost of their education; and allows for processes to be developed in the future for mandatory non-instructional fees and exceptional tuition and fee increases. Future flexibility is important because Alberta must be able to set rates of tuition and fees that are competitive across Canada.

The government has extended the tuition freeze to post-secondary institutions for a fifth year in 2019-20. With the continuation of the tuition freeze for another academic year, we anticipate a related continuation of the tuition backfill. Revenue from tuition represents approximately 27 per cent of UCalgary’s operating budget; it is critical that the tuition freeze is accompanied by corresponding backfill funding from government to ensure students continue to have access to a high-quality education.