Wotherspoon announces plan to make post-secondary education accessible and affordable

January 15, 2018

Today NDP leadership candidate Trent Wotherspoon committed to investing and working collaboratively to make post-secondary education and training accessible and affordable.

"I'm committed to making sure that every person with the interest and ability to pursue higher education is able to – regardless of their ability to pay," said Wotherspoon. "The fact that Saskatchewan has the second highest tuition rates in the country is unacceptable, and unfortunately, the Sask. Party’s cuts are making a bad situation even worse. I'm committed to making education a priority, from early years' education through to post-secondary and training."

As NDP Leader, Wotherspoon is committed to:

  • Initiating a comprehensive post-secondary and training accessibility review in consultation with students, young people, and post-secondary institutions to conclude well in advance of the next election, with an aim to design a system, platform and actions that will address accessibility and affordability, focusing on tuition, housing and geographic barriers.  

As premier, Wotherspoon is committed to:

  • Reversing the Sask. Party's cuts to post-secondary institutions and increasing funding to lower tuition and ensure high quality education.
  • Investing in affordable student housing solutions.
  • Improving access to healthy, quality food for students.
  • Expanding the availability and use of digital textbooks to reduce costs for students.
  • Rebuilding the GradWorks program to give graduating students the opportunity to gain work experience and expanding the program to reach out to different levels of government and other groups or agencies ready to partner in expanding opportunity for young graduates.
  • Working with the construction industry, trades, and apprenticeship programs to meet the demands of the labour market, while strengthening support for apprenticeship and the trades.
  • Supporting First Nations and Métis youth, newcomers to Saskatchewan, and women take on non-traditional post-secondary courses and careers.
  • Increasing access to post-secondary education in rural and Northern communities through satellite and distance learning opportunities.
  • Working with Northern leaders to re-establish a successful, Northern-controlled teacher education and university program after the damaging elimination of NORTEP/NORPAC.
  • Supporting the ongoing efforts of Indigenization on campuses in a collaborative way.
  • Increasing support to Saskatchewan Polytechnic and regional colleges and supporting partnerships between institutions to make post-secondary education accessible.  
  • Supporting and relying on centres of excellence like the Global Institute for Water Security and the Global Institute for Food Security and creating a new centre of excellence with a focus on renewable energy and efficiency. 
  • Delivering universal $15 a day childcare and universal mental health and addictions services that are responsive to students' needs and realities. 
  • Support business incubators to help entrepreneurs and to diversify and strengthen our economy
  • Building effective training and re-training programs in the wake of damaging Sask. Party cuts.   
  • Building a strong and inclusive economy with diversified opportunities and good jobs.

-30-

For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:

Mitchell Bonokoski
306-531-5598
mitchell.bonokoski@trent4leader.com