To: Principals, Deans, Academic Directors & Chairs
Professional and Managerial Staff
From: Jill Matus, Vice-Provost, Students
Date: August 23, 2011
Re: Compulsory Student Ancillary Fees
The Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges & Universities has requested that I write to remind you of the Ministry's requirements regarding compulsory charges of academic and non-academic ancillary fees.
The Ministry's policy prohibits compulsory tuition-related ancillary fees or surcharges related to the delivery of academic courses. All of the costs associated with students' participation in a course are expected to be funded through tuition revenue and the University's provincial operating grant. Students must be able to complete all aspects of a course without a mandatory surcharge (and students cannot be penalized for not choosing to pay the surcharge). The Ministry specifically asked that we remind instructors that it is not permitted to require students to purchase access to online resources or online software applications to access assignments, tests or examinations. Please communicate this requirement to all instructors in your unit.
With respect to non-tuition-related compulsory ancillary fees charged for campus and student services, the Ministry's policy is that these fees may not fund academic services or other elements of academic programs. These fees are also subject to other requirements (see below).
Under the University's policies, all compulsory ancillary fees must be approved by the Governing Council. This includes fees for campus and student services provided by the University, student societies, special levies of student societies (e.g., to fund special projects including capital projects), cost recoveries (e.g., publications, field trips, clothing, equipment that becomes the property of students), and administrative user fees and fines (e.g., application fees, placement fees, library fines, other administrative fees). Fees charged to recover costs must relate to those costs, and may not exceed them, or a reasonable estimate of them.
Academic ancillary fees, including cost recovery fees, administrative user fees, and fines, are subject to the requirements and procedures described in the Policy on Ancillary Fees.
Non-academic ancillary fees (sometimes described as incidental fees or non-tuition fees), including fees for campus services and student societies, are subject to the provisions and procedures of the Policy for Compulsory Non-Academic Incidental Fees. Compulsory fees for campus and student services are also subject to the University's protocol on non-tuition fees.
If your unit is considering the implementation of an academic or non-academic ancillary fee, please contact one of the individuals listed below well in advance of the anticipated session in which proposed fees are to begin. For new fees or changes to fees scheduled to begin in fall 2012, it would be advisable to begin the planning process by early fall 2011 as these fees must be approved by the Governing Council no later than the late winter of 2012.
If you have any queries about existing practice in your unit, or if you have other questions about the Policies, please contact the following:
On matters related to academic ancillary fees:
Sally Garner, Executive Director, Planning & Budget
(416) 978-2819 / firstname.lastname@example.org
On matters related to non-academic ancillary fees (incidental fees):
Jim Delaney, Director, Office of the Vice-Provost, Students
(416) 978-4027 / email@example.com