CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Budget cuts are responsible for most of the loss of almost 4,000 teaching jobs in North Carolina, and school officials fear the losses will be worse next year when federal stimulus money dries up.
The Charlotte Observer reported Friday that 35 or more students now fill some classrooms. Schools have eliminated foreign languages, high-level science classes and other electives.
North Carolina has just over 95,000 teachers, down from about 99,000 last year.
Legislators cut $789 million from the public school budget for this year.
School districts used federal money to pay the salaries of more than 9,200 teachers this year, but the state budget cuts meant about 3,000 teachers were let go.
A further cut of about 700 teachers can be attributed to fewer kindergarten children starting school.
Information from: The Charlotte Observer
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