A protester marches during a demonstration against tuition fee hikes in Victoriaville, Quebec, May 4, 2012.
Credits: REUTERS/Christinne Muschi
One school after another rejected a government proposal aimed at softening the effects of a seven-year, $1,800 tuition hike.
It's a major blow to Premier Jean Charest, who announced the deal on the weekend by telling reporters "everyone comes out of this a winner."
Students instead renewed mandates for strikes on Tuesday.
The province-wide demonstrations have already wiped out the spring semester for thousands of students, though most Quebec students attended classes. Several of the demonstrations degenerated into violent clashes and triggered a national debate about protest tactics and funding for education.
Even some Quebec student leaders appear surprised that the agreement they brokered with education department officials has fallen flat.
"We thought we had arrived at the beginning of the end," said Martine Desjardins, president of the moderate FEUQ student group.
"The end seems to be postponed."
The deal announced Saturday proposed the creation of a council to review university spending and pass the savings on to students.
The savings would have been deducted from ancillary fees to offset the effects of the tuition increase.
Education Minister Line Beauchamp said she was disappointed that students are rejecting a chance to salvage their semesters.
She suggests the agreement could be modified later and urged students to accept the preliminary recommendations.
"This is a first step, not the end," said the minister. "This is not a deal that solves everything ... this is an agreement to end the crisis."
Hundreds of bridge blockades, riots and sit-ins have sent police overtime costs soaring and the anarchist Black Bloc has been accused of hijacking peaceful demonstrations to cause mayhem.
Montreal Mayor Gerald Tremblay introduced a bylaw Monday that would ban masks during protests.
The proposed regulation would also make it illegal to hold a rally in the city unless organizers provide an itinerary to police.