Commissioners and Advisory Committee
Briefs and Comments
of Reference (pdf)
Nearly five decades ago, a Royal Commission on Higher Education
(1962), chaired by John J. Deutsch, provided a number of important recommendations
for the post-secondary sector in New Brunswick including the transfer
of St. Thomas University to Fredericton, the establishment of a campus
of the University of New Brunswick in Saint John, the consolidation of
the numerous existing French-language institutions into a single university,
and the restructuring of the Province's student financial assistance system.
There have been several other efforts since then to examine
various aspects of the Province’s post-secondary sector, but none
have explored it in as much detail, or recommended such fundamental changes:
• The Committee on Higher Education in the French
Sector (1975), chaired by Louis LeBel, made additional recommendations
relating to the Université de Moncton.
• The Commission on Excellence in Education, co-chaired by Aldéa
Landry and James Downey, undertook a comprehensive overview of New Brunswick’s
entire education system. To Live and Learn: The Challenge of Education
and Training (1993) recommended a number of changes related to post-secondary
education, training, and the promotion of lifelong learning.
• The Multi-Year Funding Plan for New Brunswick Universities (1999),
chaired by Médard Collette, focused almost exclusively on university
• Modernizing the New Brunswick Community College (2005), of a series
of government-initiated consultations with local stakeholders, staff and
Revisions of the post-secondary sector have not been limited
to New Brunswick. Six other provinces have launched post-secondary education
commissions during the past three years:
• Quebec’s Parliamentary Committee on Education
completed a review on Quality, Accessibility and Funding of Universities
(2004), followed by a ministry-led review of the college system.
• Ontario’s independent commission under former Premier Bob
Rae undertook a Postsecondary Education Review (2005), and British Columbia
launched Campus 20/20 in August 2006.
• Three provinces – Newfoundland and Labrador (2005), Alberta
(2006), and Saskatchewan (launched May 2006) – established ministry/legislative
task forces to examine their post-secondary sectors.
In launching its own Commission on Post-Secondary Education, New Brunswick
faces the added challenges of:
1) A relatively large and diverse post-secondary
education and training system within a relatively small Province;
2) A commitment to provide equivalent levels of educational opportunities
to two linguistic communities: francophone and anglophone;
3) A rapidly declining youth population.