Romano should be increasing education opportunities for northern students, not cutting them: Mantha

Michael Mantha
Mantha Re-Elected in Algoma-Manitoulin. Ontario Election 2018.

ELLIOT LAKE — Sault Ste. Marie MPP Ross Romano should be using his new position as minister responsible for colleges and universities to allow students in Northern Ontario to have the same opportunities he had, not take them away, said Michael Mantha, MPP for Algoma-Manitoulin.

“I was shocked to read that the new minister for Training, Colleges and Universities, Ross Romano, said he used OSAP to get his education, but is still completely in favour of taking OSAP away from this generation of students,” said Mantha. “Why is Mr. Romano championing Doug Ford’s sweeping cuts to student aid, and to our colleges and universities? Doesn’t he know what that will do to students in Northern Ontario?”

The Ford Conservatives cut $360 million from universities and $80 million from colleges — a funding hole that will likely lead to skyrocketing tuition in 2021 to make up for it. At the same time, the Ford Conservatives cancelled free tuition for the lowest income students, cut OSAP supports, and reduced non-repayable OSAP grants.


“Students are scrambling to find the money to go to college or university this fall, trying to borrow from banks on top of their OSAP loans, and, in some cases, reconsidering whether they can afford to go to school at all. Mr. Romano was able to get an education because of OSAP,” said Mantha. “Now, he’s taking it away from other northerners.


“Mr. Romano, use your power as minister to reverse the cuts to OSAP and allow students the same opportunity to study in Northern Ontario that you had.”

Ontario students already carry the highest levels of student debt in the country.  Once they leave school, they will have student loan payments the size of mortgage payments.  To make matters worse, Ford and Romano cancelled the six-month interest-free grace period OSAP loans, so the Ford Conservatives will now be collecting interest the very day a student leaves school. That will force students to rack up more debt before they’ve even have had a chance to find a job.


Under the Liberal government the province was making over $25 million a year in profit from student debt and now the Ford Conservatives want to squeeze even more from students.


The NDP has been fighting for a better start for students with less debt, which means converting student loans to grants.


  1. It’s my understanding that Confucius would only agree to teach a student after he met with the student, and the student displayed a sincere and insatiable desire to learn. If the STUDENT did not display that desire to learn they would NOT be offered a spot no matter how rich the parents/guardians were.

    Once interested learners were identified by Confucius he would require the parents/guardians of the student to give him HALF of their estate to secure a spot for the interested student.

    Big estate… half. Small estate… half. Impoverished estate… half of everything.

    Confucius was not driven by money, although he did require it to run his school, rather, the determining factor of whether or not a person was offered a position in Confucius’ school of higher learning was their desire to learn!!

    Yes, there was a burdensome financial requirement of EVERY family as well, and that too was an important component of receiving a valuable Confucian education.

    I’m wondering how MPP Romano’s, or MPP Mantha’s approach honours the actual students’ desire to learn, or not, and how each family pays an appropriate amount for what SHOULD BE a valuable education?

    Citizen Mark Brown

  2. The world needs Uber drivers, too, which is where Mantha is heading…seriously tho. Skills in trades are dramatically needed. Don’t need OSAP for that to make a good living…a better Apprenticeship program perhaps…

    • Where do you get that? Do you have any idea how many tradespeople are sitting around waiting for a call? We have a surplus of trades.

  3. I make $55000 a year. Can afford to send my kid to college as I’m a single mom raising two kids and OSAP won’t help her because I make to much. Nobody can afford it.

    • I don’t know your entire situation, but from the tiny bit of information you (she) offered it would seem that you (she) could rent out a room in your (her).place for $550 a month and get $6,600 a year to over the cost of Tuition to a local college or university?

      That would probably be better for you (her) than getting married and adding that income and all the other expense and benefit that marriage entails in order for your (her) child to be able to afford to go to college or university?

      Being single is a choice that has financial implications. Going to college or university is a choice that has financial implications.

      Choices have consequences; Some are good, and some are bad.

      Rent out a room and give your child an education if you don’t qualify for OSAP.

      Or change absolutely nothing about your (her) current lifestyle, and HOPE LIKE HECK that taxpayers will give YOUR CHILD an ADDITIONAL 2, 3, or 4 years of FREE education over and above the 14 years of free education they have already received just so you don’t have to change ANYTHING about your current lifestyle to give YOUR CHILD an EXPENSIVE education.

      The choice is yours, and your child’s future depends on the choice that YOU. make.

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