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SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO : Need to Cut Costs Cited by Schools

Capistrano Unified School District officials said Monday night that they will have to make cuts for the next school year, even if the district recovers 100% of the money it had in the county’s troubled investment pool.

District officials estimate that they will lose $3.5 million in interest for the fiscal year ending June 30 because of the county’s crisis.

Supt. James A. Fleming told trustees that February through May would be a “difficult” time while making decisions to prepare the next budget.

In an interview Tuesday, Fleming said that layoffs for the 1995-96 school year could be a way to bridge an expected $4.3-million shortfall.

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“It is my hope and the board’s hope that we can make it through this crisis without laying off any teachers or any full-time employees,” Fleming said. “At this point, I don’t want to project any layoffs or what layoffs will occur. At this point, we simply don’t know.”

Because the district is growing, it could absorb the financial blow through employee attrition and not hiring new teachers, Fleming said. Given a choice, the district would not hire new teachers, he said.

Under state law, school districts are required to deposit their money with the county.

Capistrano Unified School District had $74 million in the county pool.

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