From correspondent Maria Magher
The Chapel Hill-Carrboro school board decided Thursday night not to consider a new “pay to participate” policy for sports programs in the schools during deliberations about a potential $7.8 million in cuts expected from the state.
“I think we’re already asking parents to pay enough,” board member Greg McElveen said, noting that students must pay for shoes, uniforms, and other accessories when they sign up to play team sports at the schools.
Administrators estimated that students would have paid $50 to $100 to participate, depending on the sport and the school, as some schools receive more support from their booster clubs. The policy could have generated about $200,000 per year to support athletics, which is facing a $100,000 reduction.
Board Chairwoman Jamezetta Bedford said the board should look at ways to cut other expenses in the athletics program, such as looking at the number of coaches.
The discussion about athletics was part of a larger discussion about the budget, which administrators now expect will see $7.8 million in cuts. The state budget has not been finalized, but Superintendent Neil Pedersen said he doesn’t expect that the final picture will be much different.
We'll have a fuller version of this story coming in Sunday's Chapel Hill News.