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Norwin secures refunds for canceled Japan trip

| Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Norwin officials have arranged for world language students to be reimbursed for all but $230 of their expenses related to a canceled trip to Japan.

District administrators decided last week to cancel the April 13-22 trip to southern areas of Japan and the capital city of Tokyo because of the damage related to a recent earthquake and tsunami and issues related to one of the country's power plants.

Officials said Monday that the district's legal counsel helped to arrange a reimbursement from Massachusetts-based EF Educational Tours for all but a student's $95 enrollment fee and $135 insurance policy. In all, each student's cost for the trip was more than $3,000.

"We're just pleased that we were able to work that out," Superintendent William Kerr said.

The Japan trip was among a series scheduled for junior and senior world language students in April. Other trips to France, Germany and Spain won't be affected.

The trips usually are taken every other year, but district officials said they'll have until September or October to decide if they can schedule another trip for Japan in 2012.

"We'll leave that up to the sponsors and the advisers," Kerr said.

Parents can cancel their trip arrangements by calling EF Educational Tours' customer service line at 800-665-5364. By canceling individually, parents can choose to apply their previous payment to a future travel voucher.

Also last night, school board Vice President Thomas Sturm said district officials are eliminating reimbursements for any national conferences attended by board members and administrators as cost-saving measure in the 2011-12 budget.

Officials estimated the move will save about $25,000 in the next budget.

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