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| Wednesday, March 20, 2013, 9:00 p.m.


Board to vote on fee to participate in activities

The school board is considering a pay-to-participate fee schedule for extracurricular activities, beginning in the next school year.

The proposed policy would apply to middle and high school activities such as athletic teams and marching band. A high school student would pay a maximum of $100 per sport, and the fee for a single student would not exceed $275, board member Bob Elms said at a board workshop meeting on Monday.

The school board is scheduled to vote March 27 on releasing the first draft for a 30-day public review.

Policy committee members said they had not seen or discussed the policy and questioned some of the proposal.

Committee members Janice Rawson and Jim Capell said the board should first investigate whether the fees are needed to fund activities before releasing a policy.

Committee member Dave Magill said the proposed costs are unfair to lower-income families.

“I didn't see where the lower-income people are being helped,” he said.

School director Dan Nowak said the board should start discuss a policy now before the year-end budgeting crunch begins.


STEMM offered at Fox Chapel Area

The Western Pennsylvania STEMM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine) Academy will be offered Mondays through Thursdays, July 8-Aug. 1 at Fox Chapel Area High School.

The academy offers hands-on enrichment activities for rising high school sophomores, juniors and seniors seeking to pursue STEMM careers or to learn more about them. Leaders from the region's corporations and STEMM fields participate.

Enrollment is open. The cost to attend is $400, with a $50 discount for those applying by May 15. For more information and to download an application, visit, call 412-967-2430, or email

Mars Area

Kindergarten registration open

Mars Area Primary Center will accept kindergarten registration packets for the 2013-14 school year from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. March 26, at the district administration office, 545 Route 28, Mars.

Assignment to morning or afternoon kindergarten will be done through a lottery. A waiting list for session preferences will be established once classes are filled.

Kindergarten is open to children who will be 5 on or before Sept. 1. Parents may stop by the school's main office between 8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, to obtain a registration packet. For more information, call 724-625-1588.

West Jefferson Hills

Financial review expected by April

A review of the district's finances by a financial consultant is expected to be completed by early April, school board members said this week.

The report by Patrick Sable, who was hired last month, will help the board determine how to proceed with a high school modernization project.

The report will determine if the district can build a high school by restructuring its finances or if it will be required to seek voters' permission, via a referendum, to raise taxes above limits set by state law, board President Anthony Angotti said.

“That report is critical,” Angotti said. “We're trying to look at all of the alternatives and all of the options that we could be faced with.”

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