Thousands of teachers and students have taken to the streets in of the French capital, Paris, to protest against government's education reform plans and job cuts.
Thousands of French teachers and students along with their parents demonstrated in Paris on Saturday, a Press TV correspondent reported.
“If education is costly, then try ignorance,” read a banner carried by the French students on Saturday.
Earlier this week, during his annual address to the national education system, French President Nicolas Sarkozy had warned that tough times are near.
Protesters say more than half of some 80,000 those who will lose their jobs as part of the reform plan will be teachers.
Education gets the hit partly because of its prominence in national finances. It is the French state's single largest spending post, amounting to 22 percent of the national budget in 2009, or about 60 billion euros, reports say.
The state employs more than 1.1 million education professionals, which represents half of all civil servants. In France, teachers belong to the civil service.
Earlier in January, French Budget Minister Francois Baroin said the government plans to unveil its first choices on reforming tax policy at the end of February in a way to help the country to meet deficit target set at 6 percent in 2011.
"The year of 2011 will be characterized by the continued monitoring of the public spending and will be the year of the reform of tax heritage," Baroin said.
"We'll announce at the end of February ... we will wait another month to say which ones we will reserve to lead us to a reform which should be simple," he added while addressing the press in his New Year greeting message.
France is working to save 100 billion euros (132.93 billion US dollars) over the next three years with the aim to cut budget deficit from an estimated 7.7 percent in 2010 to 6 percent in 2011 and 3 percent in 2013.
Last fall, during nearly two months of mass demonstrations, strikes, blockades and clashes with police, people protested against Sarkozy's pension reforms across France.
Later in November, a reform to the pension system increasing France's minimum retirement age from 60 to 62, and the age to qualify for a full annuity from 65 to 67, was passed into law.