The Fairfax County School Board is scheduled to discuss a proposal to expand all-day kindergarten to all 135 elementary schools at a Nov. 8 work session, officials said.
The $21.2 million kindergarten initiative was one of several spending priorities that Superintendent Jack D. Dale proposed to board members Oct. 21 in connection with the budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1. All-day kindergarten is now available at 62 schools.
Other items Dale asked the board to consider included the following:
* Expanding after-school programs and adding late buses, especially for the county's middle school students.
* Replacing 30,000 computers that are more than five years old.
* Fully funding the Family and Early Childhood Education Program to accommodate 301 children on the waiting list. The Head Start program is a free service for economically disadvantaged children from birth to age 5, including children with disabilities or special needs.
* Increasing learning opportunities for high school students by designating academic specialties at each high school, a plan Dale called "high school of the future." Details of this concept are still being developed.
* Boosting the numbers of Latino, African American and economically disadvantaged students in gifted-and-talented or advanced programs at elementary and secondary schools.
* Increasing, by 81, the number of school-based technology support specialists.
At the Nov. 8 meeting, board members are expected to set priorities from Dale's list so school finance officials can prepare the fiscal 2006 spending plan. The work session is scheduled to begin at noon at the Burkholder Center, 10700 Page Ave., Fairfax City.
On Jan. 13, Dale will present the proposed budget to the School Board and Board of Supervisors. Hearings on the budget proposal will be Jan. 24-25 and May 16 and, if needed, May 17.
-- STEPHEN C. FEHR
More information about Dale's proposed list is at www.boarddocs.com/vsba/fairfax/Board.nsf/Public?OpenFrameSet. Click on "10/21/2004 Work Sessions," then click on "Resource Management and Evaluation" and then "Discussion: FY 2006 Budget."