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Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Airplane snag wrecks winter break trip

WALTHAM

Eighteen Waltham High School students were supposed to spend today strolling the Alhambra and practicing their Spanish with shopkeepers in the Spanish city of Granada.

Instead they and their two teacher chaperones are stuck at home. When they arrived for their flight Friday night, Delta Airlines had only 11 boarding passes for the group. The airline said the best they could do was offer the rest of the group a flight to Brussels, Belgium the next day, said Waltham High Spanish teacher Lisa Geaney

Geaney said the students had scrimped, saved and worked part-time jobs to cover the trip's $2,500 price tag and it frustrates her that they don't have anything to show for it.

"They're studying the language, they wanted to experience the culture, and really put to use what they were learning in the classrooms," said Geaney. "They do everything right, they follow the instructions given by Delta the entire evening, just so they [Delta] can say, 'Well, we don't have their seat.'"

Delta did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

-- Stephanie V. Siek

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