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LA Parents Fuming Over Longer Catholic School Year

Schools to add 20 days
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(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — The recent decision by the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles to expand the school year by nearly three weeks has many parents upset — with some even seeing ulterior motives behind the move.

Starting this fall, the majority of Catholic elementary schools in the city will add 20 days to their calendar, making their school year among the longest in the nation.

While outgoing Cardinal Roger Mahony denies the move is an attempt by the archdiocese to gain a competitive advantage over the Los Angeles Unified School District, parent Christy Cattalano tells KFWB’s Maggie McKay and Michael Shappee she’s not so sure.

The expansion to a 200-day calendar comes as the LAUSD slashed its school year to 175 days in 2011.

Mahoney says the move, which affects over 52,000 elementary and middle school children in three counties, is largely aimed at improving classroom performance to ensure that students would become globally competitive.

(©2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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