01/14/2013 02:10 EST | Updated 03/16/2013 05:12 EDT

Parents speak out against school funding cuts

Parent groups across the province are upset with what they say are increasingly deeper cuts to the education system.

They say the funding reductions are having an impact on classrooms.

The budget introduced by the Parti Québécois last fall included a $200-million budget cut to school boards.

The PQ cuts, combined with previous cuts from Liberal governments, amount to a total of half-a-billion dollars in reduced funding, according to the president of the Quebec Federation of Parents' Committees, Gaston Rioux.

He said the cuts are having a worrisome effect on classrooms, and they will take a toll in the long-term.

Rioux also pointed out the government can't continue cutting education funding if it hopes to increase the number of people who successfully graduate from high school.

David D'Aoust, the president of the Quebec English School Boards Association, agrees the funding reductions could have an effect on the long-term health of the education system

He said less money would likely mean a reduction in the number of psychologists working for schools. Currently, some schools contract their psychologists, instead of having them on staff. D'Aoust said these contracts will likely be cut.

With school administration already functioning on a tight budget, D'Aoust said clasrooms are going to bear the brunt of the cuts.