Report questions effectiveness of New Brunswick's tuition access bursary

Jordan Gill, CBC News, May 01, 2017
Commentary by Stephen Downes

New Brunswick's free tuition program for low-income families was only launched last year, but the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies (AIMS) is already criticizing it for not improving completion rates. It's just the latest in a series of unwarranted attacks on the program, including private schools demanding equal subsidies, allegations it reaches too few students (only 5100 of 7000 eligible), the obligatory attack from Irving's media arm, and even a constitutional challenge. The common thread to all this, though, is best summarized by Robert Burroughs, the executive director of the New Brunswick Student Alliance. "What I'm hearing is ... New Brunswicker taxpayers shouldn't be subsidising poor kids to go to school," said Burroughs. "That's the underlying message that I'm hearing here, which is fundamentally problematic."

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