Students in Prince George's County will have to pay $50 to play on school athletic teams next year.
The school system is facing a budget gap of more than $145 million and approved this new rule on Thursday. It says any student playing on an "interscholastic athletic team" has to pay a fee of $50. There won't be an additional fee for students who play more than one sport.
In a statement, Superintendent Dr. William Hite says it's the first time the county has charged an activity fee. He says it's just one of many strategies to maintain extracurricular programs as schools face cuts during tough economic times.
Students already pay an athletics fee at schools in other parts of the region, including Montgomery County in Maryland and Fairfax and Loudoun counties in Virginia.