Canada: Staff cuts to boost class size on campus

by E Wayne Ross on August 3, 2009

Globe and Mail: Staff cuts to boost class size on campus
Services hurt as universities strapped for cash

A wave of staff reductions at cash-strapped universities will mean larger classes and fewer services for students at campuses this September.

The budget squeeze – the result of falling investment income and rising costs, especially for pensions – has left many universities scrambling to find millions of dollars in savings for the coming school year. With salaries accounting for the lion’s share of budgets, job losses are the inevitable result, school leaders say. That’s led to a range of actions to reduce head counts on campus, including layoffs, buyout offers, the cancellation of teaching contracts and hiring freezes.