VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Despite expressed feelings of regret, the Virginia Beach SchoolBoard unanimously voted to end 4, year round elementary schools atthe completion of this calendar year; Corporate Landing, Plaza,Point O' View and Seatack. Virginia Beach Education AssociationPresident Dominic Melito worried about the teachers
"In these economic times any cut in pay is going to be felt allthe more," Melito told the Virginia Beach School Board.
The Assistant Superintendent in charge of Elementary Educationsaid students would not be negatively affected.
"I think this is one program we can end because it is moreexpensive than the traditional calendar and still provide the sameservices to students through after school tuturing and remediationprograms we already have in place," said Betsy Taylor.
The decision was part of a larger round of proposed cuts.According to the Superintendent's Estimate of Needs for 2009-2010,cuts must equal $56.5 million.
"I would characterize our situation as one of sacrifice andrestraint, but not crisis," said Superintendent Dr. JamesMerrill.
Eliminating year round schools will save just under$800-thousand. The biggest piece of the puzzle? No employee raises.It would save $17.8-million.
Melito said it's better than job cuts.
"I don't know that it's any rosier anywhere else."
According to the proposed budget, some after school programs,field trips and Saturday detention would also be cut.
The Virginia Beach School Board will vote on theSuperintendent's Estimate of Needs the first week in March.
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