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District OKs Annual Budget of $145 Million

Orange Unified School District trustees agreed to start an English immersion program for preschoolers, to hire a public relations officer and to tee off on a girls’ golf program before adopting an annual budget of $145 million last week.

The budget for the 1998-99 fiscal year is down by several million dollars from last year, largely because finance officials did not have to include the $3 million the district spent to renovate McPherson magnet school, which opened in September.

Other budget highlights include about $200,000 to pay for a new middle school program that will intervene with tutoring and other means to help failing students. Nearly $600,000 will be spent on textbooks and library books at various schools, and $200,000 was allotted to a new program that will match fund-raising efforts by parent-teacher associations to improve school buildings.

The district is projecting that 29,704 students will be attending schools next year, coming from Orange, Villa Park and parts of Santa Ana, Garden Grove and Anaheim. The increase of 667 students means that 22 new teachers will need to be hired.

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Trustee Maureen Aschoff said she would like the business department and the school board to begin looking at some strategic planning. “We really haven’t formulated what our priorities are,” she said. “We need to do that.”

David W. Perry, assistant superintendent for business, said that kind of planning is typical for school districts.

Trustees will discuss that issue at their next board meeting July 9.


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