NC School Calendar Law Needs to Go!

NC School Calendar Law Needs to Go!

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Thomas Wall started this petition to North Carolina General Assembly

Every since the 2005-2006 school year, North Carolina General Assembly mandated the School Calendar Law.  This law states the following according to the NC DPI Website.

 Start date no earlier than the Monday closest to August 26 and end date no later than the Friday closest to June 11 (unless a weather related calendar waiver has been approved, year-round school, charter school or cooperative innovative high school.) If waiver is approved the start date can be no earlier than the Monday closest to August 19.

The reason for this law was the tourist industry complained that summer vacations were cut short and it was cutting into their revenues and some families felt that the summers were too short. 

Most school calendars are approved in plenty of time for families to make vacation plans so that it does not interfere with school starting back.  Some may say that rates are cheaper in August, but most of the time, prices drop after Labor Day.

While this seems like a wonderful idea, but it has other consequences to it, such as the following:

  • High School students are not able to start Fall Exams after the Winter Break, as many school districts try to balance an equal amount days in Fall and Spring.  The are more and more seniors who have the opportunity to finish early, but must sit out the spring as colleges have already started their Spring semesters in the early part of January.
  • Every January, North Carolina has had a weather event that has effected the schools.  It has caused exams schedules to push to almost the end of January.
  • If students are out more than normal for inclement weather, than Spring Break takes a chance of being taken away, because of the push to have be done by June 11.  
  • Adding time at the end of the year is not a solution because of June 11 and often times students start shutting down after Memorial Day.
  • With this calendar law, it creates unpopular choices when it comes time to make it up. Options are usually Teacher Workdays, Spring Break, and Saturdays.  Which normally creates higher absentee rates with families already making plans and appointments.
  • Students have stressed they want the exams prior to Winter Break, so they can enjoy the holidays stress free.

In General this is how many days have been missed in the past 3 Winters, the average is 5 days with most districts already missing 8 days already in 2018-19 school year because of two hurricanes, and a December snow storm.

The solution I want to see happen is that districts should be able to get the authority to decide on when to start school and when to end it.

If you started August 15, you can be done by the end of May and use the first week of June for make ups if necessary.  Currently most students don't finish until after June 10.

One solution that has been suggested that we started when the community colleges so that our seniors who can graduate early can enroll for Spring semesters.

I am asking that this law be revoked and calendars go back to local control. Please sign and share if you agree.


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