Md. Panel Recommends Post-Labor Day School Start

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — The summer travel season kicks off in just a few days and it’s expected to be one of the biggest in years. Now there’s a new plan to extend summer vacation for Maryland public schools. It’s getting cheers from students and it could bring big money to the state.

Christie Ileto has more on how it might work.

The first bell could soon ring a little later for Maryland’s 24 public school districts–in fact, right after Labor Day.

“I would like more time off,” said student Brian Tita.

This week, a state task force pushed for a later start date statewide, arguing it’s good for students and the state’s bottom line.

Breakfast Cafe in Ocean City relies heavily on student workers in the summer. Worcester County schools just announced students will go back after Labor Day.

“It’s not just Ocean City [or] western Maryland,” said State Comptroller Peter Franchot. “It’s also areas in Baltimore that benefit.”

A state report shows a post-holiday start would directly pump $74.3 million into Maryland, including $3.7 million in new wages and $7.7 million in tax revenue.

“We can spend more days off and rest a little bit,” said Nicole Amaya.

It’s winning with students but some teachers aren’t sold.

“I think it’s good the way it is,” said teacher Meredith Anderson.

Critics are concerned about finishing the year later, if there’s a later start. The state mandates 180 days in the school calendar.

“The bad weather showed us this concern about the schedule is not particularly strong,” said Franchot. “If they took two days from Christmas, two days from spring vacation, three days from field trips–right there, you got almost enough days to start after Labor Day.”

It’s an issue that still has a ways to go before any changes are made to your student’s first bell of the school year.

The issue could then become part of legislation proposed in next year’s legislative session.

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