The Council on Post-Secondary Education is the provincial agency that works to promote excellence and cooperation within the post-secondary education sector to meet the diverse educational needs of Manitobans. Created by an Act of the Manitoba Legislature in November 1996, the Council commenced its operation in April 1997. The Council facilitates the coordination and integration of post-secondary services and facilities, reviews and approves university and college programming, develops policy, and promotes fiscal responsibility and accountability in the post-secondary system.
A major responsibility of Council is the allocation of funds to the province's seven public post-secondary institutions, comprising the University of Manitoba, the University of Winnipeg, Brandon University, Red River College, Assiniboine Community College, University College of the North, and Université de Saint-Boniface, which includes École technique et professionnelle. The Council also distributes grants to private religious institutions, which include Steinbach Bible College, Providence College and Seminary, Booth Unversity College, and the Canadian Mennonite University.
The Council acts as an intermediary between the post-secondary institutions and the government, and is composed of eleven members including a chairperson. Reporting to the Council is a staff Secretariat of thirteen provincial civil servants. The Secretariat undertakes activities and projects designed to fulfill the mandate of the Council and to meet the goals established by the Council and Manitoba Advanced Education and Literacy. The Secretariat also works in consultation with the universities and colleges to support the Council members in the development of policy and financial accountability.
The mandate of the Council on Post-Secondary Education, as stipulated in The Council on Post-Secondary Education Act, is:
" . . . to plan and co-ordinate the development of a post-secondary education system in the province that promotes excellence in and accessibility to education, supports the co-ordination and integration of services and facilities, and promotes fiscal responsibility."
The following are COPSE’s priorities and objectives for the three-year duration of the strategic plan:
Priority 1: Strengthen Accessibility to Post-Secondary Education
Throughout the next three years, COPSE will work with colleges and universities to develop actions to improve accessibility in post-secondary education and continue to strengthen the capacity of institutions through capital and programming improvements.
Priority 2: Lead the System
By the end of 2010/11, and working with post-secondary institutions, students, government and other stakeholders, COPSE will establish a vision and direction for the post-secondary system and a process for ongoing review
By March 2011, COPSE will define its intermediary role, its relationship to the government and the post-secondary institutions.
Priority 3: Improve System Coordination
COPSE will continue to work with Manitoba’s institutions to create a more coordinated system of credit transfer and articulation agreements that will include a searchable credit transfer website by March 2012.
By March 2011, and working with the post-secondary institutions, COPSE will establish and manage a permanent working group of government and institutional stakeholders to discuss formulation of a Quality Assurance process for Manitoba.
By March 2013, COPSE will develop an accountability framework to support its program approval process, as well as a performance measurement framework for the post-secondary system.
The Council on Post-Secondary Education Act, in section 4 contemplates that the Minister responsible for the Act will establish a "framework of accountability" within which the Council will operate. This framework is established in fulfillment of that requirement. It also reflects the unique position of COPSE as a Crown Agency which is not a part of the Department of Advanced Education and Literacy, but is accountable in various contexts to the Minister.
Ms. Bonnie Proven
Mr. Rex Masesar
Mr. Ross Wedlake
Mr. Tayeb Meridji, B.A., M.Sc.
Mr Jerry Storie
Ms. Beverlie Stuart
Jagdish Malik, B.Sc., B.Ed., M.A., M.Ed.
Marlene Head (The Pas)
Ray Karasevich, M.P.A.
Secretary to Council
Valerie Shantz, M.P.A.
Director, Institutional Relations
Kim Browning, M.Ed.
Director, Strategic Initiatives
Sarah Whiteford, PhD
Director, Policy and Legislation
Meg Brolley, M.Ed,
Senior Policy Analyst
Carlos Matias, CGA
Chief Financial Officer
Chris Simes, CGA
Senior Financial Officer
Melissa Weavers, B.HEc.
Senior Program Analyst
Jeffrey Kehler, M.P.A.