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House Panel Approves Earlier School Calendar

Legislation that would let North Carolina schools start the academic year two weeks earlier each August has cleared a state House committee.

The House Commerce Committee on Monday voted 14-10 to recommend the proposal to the full House, where a vote is likely this week.

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 challenge to be considered in the next two years.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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