March 26, 2015

Québec City, March 26, 2015 – The Quebec English School Boards Association (QESBA) is very worried about our students’ future following today’s budget announcements.QESBA estimates a need for a 3% increase to cover basic system costs. Today’s budget, by our estimation, has a shortfall of approximately 3% or $350-million which represents a loss of approximately $35-million in the English sector.

“The budget deposited today worries us tremendously for the future of our students,” said QESBA President David D’Aoust. “The English public system in Québec is one of the best in the world with an overall 83% success rate. After five years of continued budget compressions totalling roughly $1-billion we are very worried for our future, considering this is an additional $350-million in cutbacks” continued D’Aoust.

“The Treasury Board President Martin Coiteux was quoted as saying ‘the work to balance the budget places youths at the heart of Québec’s priorities’ but we see it as a budget built on the backs of our students,” said D’Aoust.

The provincial budget also specified that funding for bullying programs would now be allocated to the Family Ministry as opposed to Education. “Bullying programs are managed and implemented by school boards; how will these programs be monitored by the Family ministry and how will they be able to support school boards anti-bullying and anti-violence programs?” asked D’Aoust.

“The question we must ask ourselves; how will our school boards cope and what will be the effect on students and our English-speaking communities?” concluded D’Aoust.

QESBA is the voice of English public education in Québec representing some 100,000 students.