Monday, March 31, 2003 - Innovative financial measures will have to be
implemented to recover the cost of tertiary education in the region. Her
Excellency the Governor General, Dame Pearlette Louisy, made this recommendation
while addressing participants of the UWI Tertiary Level Institute Unit at their
second annual staff retreat in Saint Lucia.
In examining some of the important considerations that need to be taken into
account, in the provision of tertiary education in countries with modest
resources, the Governor General identified credibility, cost, commitment and
institutional coordination as three factors which are significant to the region.
Citing the Sir Arthur Lewis Community College as an example, the institution’s
former principal remarked, that the college has had to increase its fees to
recover some of its operational costs.
“A three tier fee structure accommodates nationals, CARICOM students and
international students, with the latter paying the full economic cost of $10,000
per academic year. Currently, registration is by programme, with a fixed fee
ranging from $300 to $1,780.”
Her Excellency Dame Pearlette indicated that because tertiary level institutions
are primarily mandated to teach, income generating initiatives cannot easily be
incorporated in their financing strategies.
“Therefore the financing of tertiary education within the OECS context, could
very well be an issue which the Tertiary Level Institutes - (TLI) can address as
a body with recommendations submitted to the OECS Ministers of education, for
consideration at their annual conferences,” said Dame Pearlette.
The Tertiary Level Institution Unit retreat which comprised senior personnel
from Saint Lucia, Barbados and Jamaica came to a close on Friday.