COU Statement: Response to Provincial Support of Postsecondary Students During COVID-19
March 31, 2020

TORONTO, March 31, 2020 – “Ontario’s universities thank Premier Doug Ford and Colleges and Universities Minister Ross Romano for their commitment to providing supports to help postsecondary students complete their studies and for distributing $25 million in additional funding to publicly-assisted universities, colleges and Indigenous Institutes, as announced today.

With a shared responsibility to do all we can to ensure students can complete their studies during the COVID-19 outbreak, Ontario’s universities welcome the provincial government’s decision to temporarily defer payments for Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) loans. These changes will help ease the financial burden and provide immediate relief to recent graduates and families in the coming months.

The new agreement with eCampus Ontario to provide additional digital learning supports to postsecondary institutions, including year-end exams, will also support the academic success of our students.

In the wake of COVID-19, the financial implications for universities will be broad and increasingly complex. The provincial government’s commitment to new funding will help address each institutions most pressing needs, including the costs of deep cleaning and offering mental health supports.

Whether it’s through ground-breaking research discoveries, supporting local public health, or by volunteering in our communities, the individual and collective efforts of our students, researchers and faculty play a significant role in helping slow the spread of COVID-19.

Universities play a vital role in shaping Ontario’s future. Ensuring that Ontario’s postsecondary sector is in a strong financial position to help communities through this period and to help strengthen and restore Ontario’s competitive economy is more important than ever.

As we face the challenges of COVID-19, Ontario’s universities look forward to continuing to partner to address the urgent needs of the province and to protect the health and well-being of all Ontarians, our communities and the province.”

– David Lindsay, President and CEO, Council of Ontario Universities


COU is the voice of Ontario’s universities, promoting the value of education, research and innovation that leads to social, cultural and economic success.

For further information, please contact:

Brian Kellow
Senior Public Affairs and Media Relations Officer
Council of Ontario Universities
416-979-2165 ext. 262
Email Brian Kellow