Discussing Quebec Student Protests on Talk Radio
I should note that Mr. Green is the author of several books, including:
-How the Granola Crunching, Tree Hugging Thug Huggers are Wrecking our Country;
–Mayday Mayday. Curb Immigration. Stop Multiculturalism Or It’s The End Of The Canada We Know;
–Here’s Proof Only We Conservatives Have Our Heads Screwed On StraightÂ
(Rest assured that Mr. Green is no more subtle on-air than when choosing titles for his books.)
You can listen to the 24-minute audio clipÂ here.
Points I raised during the show include the following:
-Senior levels of government in Canada used to cover 80% of the operating grants of Canadian universities. Today, the figure is 50%.
-The percentage of Canadian post-secondary students who work during the academic year has doubled since the mid-1970s.
-Quebec has the lowest tuition fees in Canada. It also has substantially lower student debt than many other provinces. The average fourth-year undergraduate student in Quebec who holds student loans has $11,000 less student debt than their Ontario counterpart.
-Newfoundland and Labrador, which has invested substantially in post-secondary education in recent years (and now has tuition fees that are almost as low as in Quebec), is seeing positive outcomes. Â In the late-1990s, 20,000 persons in Newfoundland and Labrador had student debt. Today, just 8,000 of them do.
-Two years ago, Leger Marketing conducted a major survey of Quebec university students; more than 12,000 undergraduates were surveyed. Findings include the fact that more than 50% of Quebec’s undergraduate students live on less than $12,000/yr. (this includes funding from all sources, including scholarships, government grants/loans and money from family); 40% of Quebec undergrads receive no financial assistance whatsoever from their family members; and more than half of full-time undergraduate students in Quebec receive no financial assistance whatsoever.
-I made two points about household debtÂ as well. Â First, it’s grown very significantly in Canada over the course of the past two decades. Second, those carrying Â the most household debt are persons aged 25-44, precisely the group that also faces the largest amounts of student debt. Ergo: if we want to get household debt under control, increasing student debt levels is not going to help.
Nick Falvo is a Calgary-based research consultant. He has a PhD in public policy.