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Arlington Schools' Chief Proposes Class Size Bump And New Fees

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By Jonathan Wilson

In Virginia, Arlington County's public school superintendent is recommending class size increases and new student fees as part of his plan to close a $12 million budget gap.

Under Superintendent Pat Murphy's proposal, Arlington students would pay a new athletic participation fee of $50 for high school sports, and $25 for middle school sports.

Students on free and reduced lunch would only have to pay 10 percent of those amounts.

His plan also calls for increasing class sizes in most grade levels, saving nearly $3 million.

Murphy says teacher job cuts should be minimal, because most employees who have their positions eliminated should be eligible for jobs elsewhere in the district, depending on their certification.

All this comes as the district is expecting to add another 1,000 students in the fall. Murphy says that means per-pupil spending is likely to return to 2007 levels.

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