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Students Plead For Endangered School Programs In Fairfax

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Hundreds packed the auditorium at Jackson Middle School to plead for various school programs in Fairfax County.
Jonathan Wilson
Hundreds packed the auditorium at Jackson Middle School to plead for various school programs in Fairfax County.

By Jonathan Wilson

Hundreds of parents, students and teachers in Fairfax County Virginia are fighting to save various school programs placed on the chopping block by the districts superintendent.

Twenty or so of the speakers at the first of three public hearings scheduled in Fairfax this week, were students.

More than a few of them began by showing off their language skills - in Spanish, Japanese, or even Arabic.

The districts Foreign Language programs for Elementary Students (FLES) would be cut if Superintendent Jack Dales budget proposal is accepted by the board.

Freshman sports and summer school are also in danger.

Fourth-grader Victor Fuentes boiled it all down to a simple question.

"If you were a kid my age how would you feel if you had the programs you enjoy and like taken away from you?" he asks.

But no matter how board members would like to answer, they're likely to disappoint some.

The school districts estimated budget shortfall stands at $176 million.

The Superintendent's proposal also calls for close to 600 job cuts.


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