On Campus

Freezing tuition: Where’s the proof?

Continuing the debate over the Manitoba government’s recent decision to end its decade-long tuition freeze to allow fees to increase in the coming fall semester, Winnipeg Sun columnist Tom Brodbeck throws out this challenge to student leaders:

I would like to put out a challenge to all the student leaders who say freezing tuition for everyone helps attract low-income people to universities and colleges.

I’m putting out the challenge because I keep hearing from student leaders who discredit the many reports that conclude freezing tuition does not make post-secondary education more accessible for low-income families.

Surely to goodness these student leaders have data and research to back up their claims that freezing the price of tuition universally improves access for low-income families.

I know student leaders — who I assume are enrolled in academic courses where evidence-based decision-making is taught — would never take positions on complex matters without appropriate research.

I assume they are employing the critical thinking skills their professors and instructors are trying to teach them in order to draw logical conclusions.

Which means they must have the data and the research to substantiate their claim that by freezing tuition for everyone, including middle- and upper-income families, a greater proportion of low-income people are able to attend universities and colleges.

Looking for more?

Get the Best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.