What happened to five great goals? say college educators
March 20, 2008 - “It seems our Premier has lost interest in what used to be one of his key priorities,” said Cindy Oliver, President of the Federation of Post-Secondary Educators (FPSE). Oliver was commenting on an announcement by the provincial government that post-secondary institutions would see cuts in their provincial operating grants.
“When Premier Campbell started his second term one of his five great goals was to make BC the most literate, best educated jurisdiction in Canada,” said Oliver. “Now we are finding out just how hollow his commitment really is. Post-secondary institutions are going to lose funding and these losses come on top of the chronic under-funding that has been a hallmark of Campbell’s approach to post-secondary education since he took office in 2001,” Oliver added.
“When the Finance Minster tabled her budget last month, we were concerned about what was missing for post-secondary education. The latest news from Victoria is that funding for post-secondary education is going to be much worse than was projected on February 19th by Carole Taylor,” said Oliver. “The Finance Minster may have succeeded in distracting public scrutiny by talking about how green her budget was, but I think these funding cuts will make people realize this government doesn’t have a coherent plan for post-secondary education and isn’t prepared to make the investments in this critical public service,” Oliver noted.
“Government MLAs have a lot of explaining to do on this announcement. After all, these are the same government MLAs who had no trouble finding an extra $400 million to pay for cost overruns at the Trade and Convention Centre, but can’t find even $40 million to ensure that our post-secondary institutions are not running in the red this year or next,” Oliver concluded.
The Federation of Post-Secondary Educators of BC is the provincial voice for faculty and staff in BC teaching universities, colleges and institutes, and in private sector institutions. FPSE member locals, represented by Presidents' Council and the Executive, represent over 10,000 faculty and staff at 18 public and 12 private sector institutions.