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Budget cuts postpone traditional start of LAUSD school year

September 7, 2010 |  9:45 am

Welcome to the first day of school -- not.

The Tuesday after Labor Day marks the traditional opening of the academic year for students in the Los Angeles Unified School District, but not this time around.

Budget cuts have resulted in a shorter school year and unpaid furlough days for teachers and other employees. That reality, combined with the Jewish High Holy Days, have pushed things back to Sept. 13.

So why are there students already attending public schools in some parts of the nation's second-largest school system?

That’s due to another recent development: a desire by some principals to start school earlier so their students have more instructional days before the annual state standardized tests in May.

High schools that started Aug. 9 include Arleta, Sun Valley High and Polytechnic, according to the district. High schools that started Aug. 16 include Canoga Park, El Camino Real, Taft, Cleveland, Jefferson and Maywood Academy.

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And students in nearly 200 independently run local charter schools are starting whenever they want to.

Looking forward, furlough days also will extend the Thanksgiving holiday for students.

Another adjustment for students and parents will be the latest round of reductions in bus service. As a result of $9 million in cuts to transportation, students attending magnet schools will have to make it to the local high school for their bus pickup.

There will be no more bus transportation at Lane Elementary in Monterey Park, Palms Middle School in Palms, Revere Middle School in Pacific Palisades and Westchester High and Wright Middle School in Westchester.

More detailed information is available at: http://transportation.lausd.net or by calling 1-800-LABUSES (522-8737).

-- Howard Blume