03/08/2014 10:25 EST | Updated 05/08/2014 05:59 EDT

CAQ's Legault pledges to abolish school boards

The Coalition Avenir Québec is promising to do away with the province’s 69 school boards and replace them with 30 regional service centres to manage student and school needs.

CAQ leader Francois Legault announced the plan at a Saturday morning press conference before hitting the campaign trail.

The plan is nothing new for CAQ and Legault, who made a similar pledge during the 2012 provincial election.

“This isn’t a question of cutting for the sake of cutting. Our goal is to bring people and resources closer together and provide services directly to students,” Legault said in a press release issued Saturday.

“It’s simply a question of efficiency and good sense.”

CAQ described the province's school boards as costly, increasingly unnecessary and even "wasteful."

Legault told reporters Saturday that the plan would save Quebec half of the $600 million that it allots annually to its school boards.

Those savings would help to improve services for students and would eventually lead to the abolition of school taxes, he said.

“It would be the end of bureaucracy and paperwork,” Legault told reporters.  

On Thursday, Legault pledged to save Quebec families an average of $1,000 a year through the progressive abolition of school and health taxes.