In late March, the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD) released a discussion paper on SMA3 and performance metrics. While OCUFA appreciates the publication of the SMA3 discussion paper and the effort to solicit consultation from the community, the timeline and discussion questions proposed by the Ministry are not conducive to a meaningful consultation and engagement process.
A consultation period of barely a month, with a provincial election imminent, makes proper discussion and engagement at the institutional level impossible. Further, by taking for granted the adoption of an outcomes-based funding model, the consultation does not make space for important dialogue about the shortcomings of outcomes-based funding – a critical concern for faculty.
OCUFA has sent an open letter to the Ministry outlining our concerns about the consultation process and making constructive recommendations that would support meaningful consultation as soon as possible.
OCUFA’s recommendations include:
- Require meaningful consultations as part of the SMA3 process;
- Ensure that institutions are given more time to consult with local stakeholders and that these consultations are conducted in a transparent manner with local concerns being communicated to the Ministry;
- Establish a broad consultation process with a proper timeline on SMA3 and use of metrics that allows for meaningful debate about the use of metrics and the outcomes-based funding approach instead of taking such an approach for granted;
- Provide transparency regarding the work of the Ministry’s technical tables; and
- Extend invitations to other stakeholders in the sector to join the technical tables.