Greater Financial Assistance For Postsecondary Students
McGuinty Government Boosts OSAP, Extends Tuition Fee Cap
College and university students are getting greater access to financial aid and more flexibility on loan repayments, as part of the McGuinty government's five-year Open Ontario plan to create new opportunities for jobs and growth.
Ontario is modernizing the Ontario Student Assistance Program and making changes to other financial supports. The changes will benefit students by:
- Providing more assistance for tuition, living costs, books, supplies and equipment
- Allowing students to keep more of the money they earn from part-time jobs
- Providing a no-interest period on student loans for six months after graduation
- Introducing 1,000 new graduate scholarships
- Providing additional support for married students and students with children
- Introducing a new grant for part-time students
- Offering students more flexibility on repayment.
The current tuition fee framework is also being extended for two more years; limiting tuition fee increases to an average of five per cent annually. Colleges and universities will be required to contribute 10 per cent of additional revenue from tuition fee increases to bursaries and other student assistance programs that provide financial aid to students most in need.The Ontario Student Opportunity Grant threshold, which caps annual student debt, will increase from $7,000 to $7,300 for a two-term academic year. This will be the first increase to the cap in 12 years.
- The government is providing $81 million in additional financial support for college and university students.
- These changes will improve assistance for about 188,000 students.
- Since 2003-04, there has been a 51 per cent increase in the number of Ontario college and university students receiving financial support through OSAP.
- Ontario's 62 per cent postsecondary education rate is one of the highest in the world.
- The government's Open Ontario Plan will help raise Ontario's postsecondary education rate to 70 per cent.
“Today's students are the builders, dreamers and innovators who will lead Ontario into the future. By providing them with the financial support they need to go to college or university, we're helping them to reach their full potential and we are building an Open Ontario that will create jobs and strengthen our economy.”