Thursday, November 13, 2008

Money Fears Become Real For Md., Va. Public Schools

By Michael Alison Chandler and Daniel de Vise
Washington Post Staff Writers
Tuesday, November 11, 2008; Page B01

Leaders of the region's two largest school systems outlined yesterday their grimmest scenarios to date for how looming budget shortfalls could play out in classrooms, with Fairfax County facing an average increase of 2 1/2 students per class and Montgomery County forced to renegotiate teacher pay increases or cut positions.

Fairfax Superintendent Jack D. Dale sketched a proposal to close a $220 million projected shortfall for the fiscal year that begins in July by eliminating summer school, except for certain special education students, and cutting more than 1,000 positions, including custodians, office workers and teachers.

"It will take decades to recover" from such cuts, Dale said in an interview. "We hope this is the worst-case scenario."

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