May 16, 2005

CFS - Trying to Claim Credit they DO NOT Deserve!

The Canadian Federation of Students are falling all over themselves to make it appear they are behind the recent Ontario Budget (which is the best Ontario Budget is my lifetime BTW) and the increases to Post-Secondary Education. They sent the following News Release:

Attention Education and News Editors:
McGuinty turns the corner on years of PSE neglect
– Students eager to develop long-term strategy for reducing fees and debt –
TORONTO, May 12 /CNW/ – Students today welcomed the McGuinty government’s renewed commitment to long-term sustainable funding for colleges and universities. “Many new governments claim to have inherited a financial mess from the previous government,” said Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. “However, in this case, the government really did inherit a post-secondary education system reeling from years of chronic underfunding, and skyrocketing tuition fees.” “Last year, the two-year, fully-funded tuition fee freeze signaled the first important step toward addressing affordability,” said Greener. “Now, with the 2005 Budget, Ontario’s colleges and universities have the long-term financial resources to begin to restore quality.”
“It has been more than ten years since Ontario students had access to an up-front needs-based grants programme,” said Greener. “The fact that ten percent of first and second-year students who demonstrate financial need will now have access to up to $3,000 in provincial grants is welcome news. We look forward to working with the government to expand these grants to more students in need.” The budget sets out new resources to increase enrollment at all levels of higher education and in particular allocates resources to increase enrollment amongst under-represented groups such as francophones, first generation students, First Nations students, students with disabilities and students from other racialised communities. However, the Federation cautions that high tuition fees remain a significant barrier for under-represented students, and more must be done in this regard to ensure that these barriers are addressed. “With these long-term funding commitments set out in this Budget, the Premier has laid the foundation for extending the tuition fee freeze until the end of his mandate,” said Greener. “And with the new federal dollars that have recently been pledged to Ontario, we are confident that we can work with Premier McGuinty and the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities to develop a long-term plan to reduce tuition fees to ensure that college and university education is affordable for all Ontarians.” Students are also pleased that this budget favours access over elitism. University presidents and the Millennium Scholarship Foundation were hoping for massive fee hikes. Today’s budget signals that the McGuinty government has rejected that path. However, any move toward higher fees will wipe out the positive effects of this budget. “Some university presidents and high profile deans who were calling for massive tuition fee increases have suggested that students were unrealistic to campaign for both quality and affordability,” said Greener. “Premier McGuinty’s budget shows that when students, staff and faculty work together to make their voices heard, governments can and do listen.” The Canadian Federation of Students, Canada’s national student organisation, unites more than 500,000 students from coast to coast, and over 235,000 in Ontario. The Federation has been campaigning for tuition fee freezes and reductions across Canada. Tuition fees were frozen this past year in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador, Quebec and Ontario.
For further information: Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson, at
(416) 925-3825 or (416) 301-5747 (cell); Pam Frache, Ontario Government Relations Coordinator, at (416) 925-3825

Now lets see all the cooperation that CFS has been doing
Exhibit A:

Attention News/Education and Politics Editors:
PSE Review Advisory Panel: Credibility compromised
TORONTO, Sept. 9 /CNW/ – Students are shocked by statements made by a member of the Post-Secondary Education Review Advisory Panel. The Panel was appointed to assist former Premier Bob Rae in conducting consultations as part of the Post-Secondary Education Review process.
In the September 6 edition of Maclean’s magazine an unnamed member of the Advisory Panel was quoted as stating that the Panel will argue that “tuition is going to have to go up.” “This proclamation is a particularly unpleasant surprise given that the
Committee has not even gone through the motions of consulting with the broader community, or issuing its much-touted discussion paper,” said Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. Questions about the legitimacy of the Review have been growing since former Ontario Premier Bob Rae, appointed to head up the Review, was quoted on May 24 as opposing centrally regulated tuition fees. On August 9, Training, Colleges and Universities Minister Mary Anne Chambers was quoted as saying that tuition fees would most likely increase after the two year freeze. According to the Federation, polls show that 82% of Ontarians do not support further tuition fee increases. “Students initially welcomed the announcement of the PSE Review thinking it would seriously explore options to extend the tuition fee freeze and begin to reduce tuition fees,” said Greener. “Ontarians want to see alternatives to simply increasing tuition fees and burdening current and future families with more debt.” “This week’s issue of Maclean’s magazine only confirms students’ cynicism,” said Greener. “We hope the Ontario government will act swiftly to salvage what credibility the PSE Review currently has left.” The Canadian Federation is comprised of over 450,000 students across Canada, and more than 235,000 in Ontario. The Federation has been campaigning for tuition fee freezes and reductions in provinces across Canada. With victories in Ontario, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec, tuition fees are now frozen or reduced for the majority of students in Canada.
For further information: contact: Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson:
(416) 925-3825 or (416) 301-5747 (cell); Pam Frache, Ontario Campaigns and Government Relations Coordinator: (416) 925-3825

So we have in Exhibit A the first uneducated knee-jerk we hate the government because it is not a bunch of socialists reaction from the CFS.
Now when OUSA (Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance) was busy researching realistic creative constructive ideas and working with the Government, Faculty, and Universities to improve education; The CFS was having a tandrum in their kiddie sandbox.
Furthermore, you will see these CFS theme that Rae = BAD and the review is going to hurt lower-income students and is all about making University unaccessable.
Exhibit B:

Attention Education/News Editors:
Media advisory – Students launch alternative to Rae review
TORONTO, Oct. 28 /CNW/ – Amidst growing concern that former Ontario Premier Bob Rae has already made up his mind about the outcome of the current public consultation on post-secondary education, students will launch an Alternative Post-Secondary Education Review on November 1, 2004.
WHEN: Monday, November 1, 2004 11:00 AM
WHERE: HART HOUSE,
University of Toronto
7 Hart House Circle
The Canadian Federation is comprised of over 450,000 students across Canada, and more than 235,000 in Ontario. The Federation has been campaigning for tuition fee freezes and reductions in provinces across Canada. With victories in Ontario, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec, tuition fees are now frozen or reduced for the majority of students in Canada. For further information: Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson, (416) 925-3825 or (416) 301-5747 (cell); Pam Frache, Ontario Campaigns and Government Relations Coordinator, (416) 925-3825

Exhibit C:

Attention News/Education Editors:
Students launch alternative to Rae Review: ReviewRae.ca
TORONTO, Nov. 1 /CNW/ – Today the Canadian Federation of Students
launched an alternative to Ontario’s Review of Post-Secondary Education. At a media conference held at the University of Toronto, a comprehensive discussion paper and alternative workbook were unveiled. Both the discussion paper and workbook are designed to offer Ontarians a wider range of possibilities than offered by the current review headed by former Premier Bob Rae.
“The purpose of our campaign is to present a veritable encyclopaedia of research that was left out of the Rae Review discussion paper,” said Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students.
Thus far, former Premier Bob Rae’s review has focused almost exclusively on promoting higher tuition fees and higher student debt. In a Maclean’s interview September 6, 2004, an unnamed Rae Review panel member pre-empted the consultation process by concluding that higher tuition fees were inevitable. Since that time the Rae Review has undertaken a biased series of consultations in which higher tuition fees and higher student debt are Rae’s primary contribution to the debate. “Low-income students are already shut out of the system and higher tuition fees will only exacerbate the problem” said Greener. “The argument, favoured by Rae, that massive fee hikes can be absorbed by 20 or 25 year repayment periods is absurd,” said Greener. In the discussion paper released today, the Federation sets out a wide array of international evidence to refute Rae’s curious assertion that increased fees and ‘flexible’ loans schemes will increase access. Drawing on data from the United States, the United Kingdom, and New Zealand, the case is made that loans deter low income students from attending college and university. “Income Contingent Loan Repayment schemes were a bad idea when Bob Rae
first tried to implement them back in the early 1990’s,” said Greener. “Ten years later, these schemes are still a regressive and unfair way of downloading the cost of post-secondary education onto the backs of students and their families.” In addition to the release of the alternative discussion paper and workbook, the Federation launched an interactive website (www.ReviewRae.ca) to engage Ontario students and their families in a more representative dialogue about how to fund post-secondary education. The website will allow visitors to download the Alternative Workbook as well as email Bob Rae directly. Relevant research and background documents are available at ReviewRae.ca. The Canadian Federation is comprised of over 450,000 students across Canada, and more than 235,000 in Ontario. The Federation has been campaigning for tuition fee freezes and reductions in provinces across Canada. With victories in Ontario, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec, tuition fees are now frozen or reduced for the majority of students in Canada. For further information: contact Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson: (416) 925-3825 or (416) 301-5747 (cell); Pam Frache, Ontario Campaigns and Government Relations Coordinator: (416) 925-3825

Exhibit D (Sent immediately following the Release of the Rae Review):

Attention News/Education/Political Editors:
Bob Rae Calls for Higher Tuition Fees and Higher Student Debt
TORONTO, Feb. 7 /CNW/ – Students’ fears about Bob Rae’s post-secondary education review were fulfilled today. Rae, a long time advocate of higher tuition fees and higher student debt, called for steep tuition fee hikes along with increased private and public student loan debt. In addition, Rae did call for more public funding and a system of grants for low-income students. “There are a lot of bells and whistles in this report but the bottom line is more debt for students and their families,” said Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. “At $6,000, Bob Rae anticipates Ontario tuition fees rising to the highest in the country.” Throughout his report Rae sets the student financial assistance threshold at $6,000 to cover tuition fees – an increase of at least $1,000 from today’s undergraduate average. In addition, Rae calls for a parallel private loan system to accommodate even higher tuition fees. While Rae does call for grants for low-income students, only families earning less than $22,615 would be eligible. Students from homes with family income between $22,615 and $35,000 would receive some form of grant to cover a portion of tuition fee costs but all those above that income threshold would finance their education exclusively through loans. “Students welcome the fact that Rae is calling for the restoration of grants in Ontario after he eliminated our grants program as Premier,” said Greener. “However, throughout this process Bob Rae has argued that ‘rich’ students need to pay more. It will come as a surprise to Ontarians that he considers any family with income above $35,000 to be wealthy.” Rae’s report also calls for the deregulation of tuition fees. Under Rae’s plan, institutions would be free to charge whatever the market will bear as long as they meet superficial and administrative criteria. “We know from past experience university administrators will maximize fee hikes. This is a good news day for elitist universities like Queen’s and Western” said Greener. “What Bob Rae has given us today is all of the worst aspects of the U.S. and the U.K. systems.” Rae’s call for fee deregulation and increased loans closely mirrors the system in the United Kingdom. Like the UK model, Rae also calls for a body to monitor access. Rae simply ignored the volumes of data and research that suggests that access has suffered under Blair’s model and that low income students have borne the brunt of the reforms. For example, Claire Callendar, Professor of Social Policy, South Bank University has derisively mocked the access framework in the UK as a “toothless body ignored by all.”
“Rae’s travelling road show was a public relations exercise. Mr Rae’s mind was always closed on the issue of tuition fees. The question now is whether Dalton McGuinty will buy into Mr Rae’s dream of higher tuition fees and student debt,” said Greener.
The Canadian Federation is comprised of over 450,000 students across Canada, and more than 235,000 in Ontario. The Federation has been campaigning for tuition fee freezes and reductions in provinces across Canada. With victories in Ontario, Manitoba, Newfoundland and Labrador and Quebec, tuition fees are now frozen or reduced for the majority of students in Canada.

Exhibit E:

Attention News/Education Editors:
McGuinty confirms hiking tuition fees was centrepiece of Rae’s review
TORONTO, Feb. 9 /CNW/ – Yesterday Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty
confirmed students’ fears that massive tuition fee hikes are the cornerstone of former Ontario Premier Bob Rae’s Review of post-secondary education. Only one day after Mr. Rae released his post-secondary education recommendations, Mr. McGuinty embraced Rae’s call to allow full flexibility for colleges and universities to set tuition fees. According to media reports Mr. McGuinty was quoted saying there was “no doubt” that tuition fees would increase in 2006. In his report, Mr. Rae recommends that a minimum of $200 million be generated in additional tuition fee revenue by 2007-2008. “Only the tuition fee freeze stopped tuition fees from increasing to $22,000 per year at the University of Toronto,” said Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students. “Queen’s University has been campaigning for full de-regulation of tuition fees, and as it stands, Mr. Rae has provided exactly that in his recommendations.”
“While Mr. Rae suggests up-front grants for a sliver of low-income
students, no grant money will be available for students with family incomes of over $35,000 per year,” said Greener. Statistics Canada cites $36,247 as the low-income cut-off – poverty line – for a family of four living in an urban centre. “For modest income, working families who earn between $35,000 and $70,000 per year Mr. Rae offers absolutely no relief whatsoever,” said Greener. “What’s on offer for the majority of Ontario families today is higher fees and higher debt.”
For further information: contact: Jesse Greener, Ontario Chairperson:
(416) 925-3825 or (416) 301-5747 (cell); Pam Frache, Ontario Campaigns and Government Relations Coordinator: (416) 925-3825

THE CFS – THEY WILL LIE TO TAKE CREDIT FOR ANYTHING THEY OPPOSED