News broke across the US about free tuition for students in San Francisco this past week, and it looks like Canada's New Democratic Party is ready to lead the way to free tuition right here in our backyard.
The NDP will be having its federal convention in about a week to discuss the party's strategies and policies heading into the 2019 federal election.
NDP's new main man, Jagmeet Singh, will take this chance to turn many of his commitments made while running for leadership into official NDP party policy.
One of Singh's major commitments is support for a $14.9 billion increase in federal transfer payments to the provinces of Canada to fund free tuition in all universities and colleges.
As Prime Minister, Jagmeet Singh will reverse this course and bring federal leadership to post-secondary education through the creation of a Post-Secondary Education Act.
Imagine that, in the near future we could see free tuition and post-secondary schooling options for Canada!
This 2018 convention will bring together activists from every region of Canada that will be working together to advance a resolution in support of eliminating tuition fees.
An unprecedented number of NDP associations from across the country have already voted to support this policy at the coming convention. It will be up to the delegates to accept it or not.
Here are some general stats
Post-secondary education is required for 70% of new jobs. The average student debt upon graduations exceeds $30, 000 and public student loan debt has exceeded $28 billion.
Tens of thousands of indigenous people have been denied funding for their education due to deliberate underfunding since 1996.
Section 3.2 of the NDP Policy book will be amended to insert the following into the party policy (new points in bold).
The establishment of a Post-Secondary Education Act to guarantee stable funding, and protect principles of accessibility, quality, academic freedom, public administration and not-for-profit delivery.
Increasing post-secondary education transfers to provinces and territories.
Measures to halt further privatization of education.
Eliminating tuition fees by working in collaboration with provincial governments.
Redirecting existing federal education tax credits into up-front needs-based grants.
Supporting literacy programs and adult education and training.
Eliminating student debt through 0% interest rates for student loans, and the creation of debt relief and forgiveness programs.
Guaranteeing the treaty right to education for indigenous, Inuit, and Metis people by removing the funding cap on programs such as the Post-Secondary Student Support Program, closing the indigenous education funding gap, and facilitating indigenization & decolonization in post-secondary institutions.
I guess we'll have to wait and see how this unfolds after the 2018 NDP convention, and again when had into the 2019 federal election.
Are you scared yet, Trudeau?