Vote On School Start Date

Legislation that would let North Carolina schools start the academic year two weeks earlier each August is getting another hearing in a state House committee.

The House Commerce Committee will consider the measure again Monday, nearly a week after it was voted down.

The bill would allow public schools to open as early as Aug. 8. A 2004 law requires most schools to begin no earlier than Aug. 25 and end by June 10.

The tourism industry is fighting the change because it would cut into traditional summer vacations. Education groups think earlier start dates would allow for exams before the Christmas vacation.

The measure faces a Thursday deadline to pass the House or face a high hurdle to be considered in the next two years.


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  • by teacher Location: washington on May 12, 2009 at 08:48 AM
    You people don't understand. The change doesn't change the number of days in the summer (except for that first summer) We have to go to school for 180 days no matter what. As far as high school exams - students have to have a certain number of days before they can take the exam and that doesn't work if you leave it how it is. The only way to have exams before Christmas is to change the date. The biggest problem with all of this is THE FACT that they can't make up their minds! Decide and STICK TO IT!!
  • by Anonymous on May 12, 2009 at 03:04 AM
    I want my children home as much as possible, and I don't like the early start dates. I am a stay at home mother too. I am not lazy either. I can't understand some peoples comments. Anyhow, starting too early does put some parents in a bind with the money. They do have to save and sometimes have a hard time doing so. Day Care centers rely on the extra time also for their business.
  • by SGB Location: Eastern NC on May 11, 2009 at 04:32 PM
    I am all in favor for school starting earlier. I wish that my daughter could get out of school in May, the way I used to! I really enjoyed getting out of school around Memorial day. The school year is still legally 180 days. I guess we'll just have to see!
  • by Reid Location: Washington on May 11, 2009 at 03:17 PM
    When I went to school, we started after Labor Day & got out first week of June. We also didn't have all the testing dates, just 1 Achievement Test a year & not so many Teacher Work Days or extra off days during the year. Leave as is or change to Start date after Labor Day & out first of June.
  • by leo on May 11, 2009 at 10:07 AM
    I agree with Posted by: Anonymous on May 11, 2009 at 11:12 AM Also, they can't take the test until they finish the grading period. Maybe they could start later if they took away vacation days. But then again, you would complain about that as well. If you want so much say in when they start, stop, have vacation, and test, maybe you should consider homeschooling.
  • by Anon Location: Gville on May 11, 2009 at 09:46 AM
    Exams are taken at the end of a course, hence the name End of Course exams. Courses end at the end of a semester. Therefore, exams are taken at the end of a semester. Students cannot take exams before a course ends, or the end of the semester.
  • by teetee Location: vanceboro on May 11, 2009 at 09:39 AM
    i wish that they would wait until after labor day for the kids to return back to school after break i am a parent of 2 one in daycare and one in school and i just cant wait until i get often work to get home home to my kids
  • by Dwayne Location: Greenville on May 11, 2009 at 08:41 AM
    Did you ever think that some stay at home or to lazy to work parents just want their children at school as much as possible because they just want the time to themselves? You are not one of those are you Marie?
  • by Ruby Location: Gville on May 11, 2009 at 08:37 AM
    I thought they just went through all of this a few years ago and had it decided - no school until after August 25th! Now they're wasting more money raising the issue all over again! August 25th is early enough to start school. Why can't exams still be taken before Christmas break? Seems to me it would be easier for teachers to plan their lessons so that kids are ready for tests before Christmas, than have to disrupt the entire tourism industry, businesses who rely on student help through the summer, family vacations, etc. But I guess that was before teachers were able to teach to make kids learn, not just to pass a test. Please leave the school start dates the way they are!
  • by Anonymous on May 11, 2009 at 08:12 AM
    Regardless of when school starts--early Aug. or late Aug.--the school year will still be 180 days for all public school students, per state law. So if kids start earlier in the year, they will get out earlier for summer break. Starting earlier in August would be of most benefit to high school students, in particular. As it is now, most of them take NC End of Course exams upon returning from Christmas break. Starting the school year earlier would allow them to finish exams before Christmas and start a new semester when they return from break (like most colleges and universities do).
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