In a bid to enhance accessibility to higher education across Ontario, the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) has laid out a comprehensive plan. This plan is centred on ensuring equity in access, opportunities, support, and outcomes for all students in the province’s universities and colleges.
HEQCO’s overarching goal is to broaden its understanding of who has access to postsecondary education in Ontario and what services and support systems they can rely on. To achieve this, HEQCO will:
1. Extend Research: The council will expand its research to encompass equitable participation and outcomes for Ontario students. By doing so, it hopes to unearth and address disparities within the postsecondary education system.
2. Equity Focus: HEQCO aims to bring to light the disparities exacerbated by the pandemic, emphasizing equitable access and opportunities throughout students’ postsecondary experiences.
3. Regional Equity: Building capacity to analyze and report on regional equity indicators will be vital for fostering equity on a provincial (system-level) scale.
4. Lifelong Learning: The council will concentrate on entry points for lifelong learning, acknowledging that education is a lifelong journey.
5. Microcredentials: Exploring the potential of microcredentials as tools for retraining and reskilling, HEQCO seeks to align education with the rapidly changing demands of the workforce.