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Long Beach : Head Start May Be Delayed

September 03, 1987

Long Beach Head Start's $2.6-million, 900-student program for low-income preschoolers probably will not start as scheduled on Sept. 22, according to a federal administrator.

The local Head Start board of directors and the parent advisory committee, which has veto power, have not been able to agree on a budget for the fiscal year beginning Nov. 1, said Roy Fleischer, Head Start's regional program director.

"I sincerely doubt we'd allow someone to begin operations in September if there is a threat to terminate operations a month later," he said.

His office has spoken with other Long Beach area groups about taking over the program, Fleischer said. If that happens, classes at the 10 preschool sites in Long Beach and Hawaiian Gardens would be delayed at least two or three months, he said.

A proposed budget from Long Beach Head Start was due on July 20. Several deadline extentions also have been missed. A special board meeting has been set for Friday on the budget. The parent committee president is on the board.

The budget delay follows a one-week shutdown of the preschools in February after anonymous threats to parents and vandalism at the Head Start office. A new board was formed at federal insistence, but problems have persisted.

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