Monday, November 10, 2008

Northern VA school district faces severe budget cuts, loss of AP and IB, layoffs

NBC4 in Washington DC is reporting that Fairfax County Public Schools, the largest school district in the Washington DC area and the 12th largest in the nation, is forced to consider drastic budget cuts, including layoffs.

Superintendent Jack Dale has come up with three plans (best to worst case scenarios) for cuts, which could include teacher layoffs.

The cuts could include eliminating some or all Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate classes, a tremendous loss of opportunity for the schools best students. It’s not clear if this could affect the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology. Other cuts include athletic programs and larger classes.

News reports indicate that these sorts of budget meetings this early are unprecedented, and that funding from the County is a highly political issue right now. The NBC-Washington story is here.

I worked as a sub in FCPS from 2004 to 2007 and have discussed my experiences there on this blog before. I have good memories of some of the AP classes (such as mathematics and chemistry). Considering that some high schools can offer two years of calculus at public expense, this is potentially a very big loss for students from the area. The jobs board on the FCPS is still unchanged and shows many positions.

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