Some Ontario Colleges Want to Unfreeze Student Tuition

Elliott St. Aubin
By Elliott St. Aubin December 8, 2023 13:25

Since the pandemic, college tuition has not changed and some colleges plan to change that. 

Average Graduate Degree Tuition Fees for International Students in Canada from 2006 to 2022 (in Canadian Dollars).” Statista, Statista Inc., 7 Sep 2022.

According to, a website which hosts a variety of statistics, the average student in Ontario has to pay $7, 920 in tuition fees alone not including the price of textbooks and other materials required for some college programs. 

However, St. Clair College strives to make college as affordable as they can for students who want to attend. 

“There is a freeze on tuition that we are abiding by the last couple of years from the provincial government,” said the vice president of college communications and community relations, John Fairley. “We are trying to make that the student experience is worth what people are paying for.” 

Fairley said the idea to unfreeze the school’s tuition comes from The Blue-Ribbon panel, where the government recommended to boost the tuition to give the colleges a little more revenue to do work on things behind the scenes like sidewalks and air conditioning. 

“They also talked about taking the freeze off by $135 per person, per year,” said Fairley.  “We were not part of that, it was just a part of a whole bunch of recommendations.” 

He said the value is there for students to come to St. Clair College through things like the exercising facilities and sports. 

Those students are worried about what it might mean for them if the college were to unfreeze tuition. 

“I think it is problematic people are already struggling to live,” said Emily Barlow, a Community and Justice student at St. Clair College. “Especially for people like myself who does not live with my parents.” 

She said she had moved into an apartment and now has to provide completely for herself. 

“We pay rent, pay all of our groceries, we pay all of our bills, school is just an added cost on to that,” said Barlow. “We have to go to school to make money and then they want us to pay more to go to school.  

Other students have a whole other set of struggles. 

“As an international student I am already paying a lot of money from back home,” said Harsh Asrani, an international St. Clair College student from India. “International students are already going through a tough life.” 

He said he is finding it hard to manage working a job with schoolwork and other stresses of life and raising the tuition would just make things even harder for him. 

According to, the average cost for international students to go to college can range anywhere from $7,000 to $22,000 depending on your program and what it needs but at St. Clair College they try to keep international students tuition low. 

“A student is a student is a student whether international or domestic,” said Fairley. “There is a lot of behind-the-scenes we do for our international students.” 

He said the college is always there to answer any questions the international students might have and they provide the same help they would to any other student at the college. 

Elliott St. Aubin
By Elliott St. Aubin December 8, 2023 13:25

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