Maryland Governor Larry Hogan passed a bill requiring all Maryland public schools to start after Labor Day weekend in attempt to help Maryland’s economy, keeping the beaches in business for one more long week.
Even though this bill looked like quite the deal for all K through 12 students, starting school later by a week and ending at the same time in mid June, little did people notice that the days taken out of that extra week were slipped right back in during the school year. We lost three-day weekends and potential days of spring and winter break.
Although Hogan’s bill cut down days off, it gave students and families an extra week to relax and not worry about school during the holiday weekend. Even though it can cut into breaks if we get too many snow days, supporters seem to not worry as we almost never exceed our snow day limit, leaving only a slim chance that we do lose spring break days. The extra week also gave people such as sophomore Matthew Kopsidas and his family Monday off of the first week to go away on vacation before the school year and a four-day week once he got back. “That extra week was awesome,” Kopsidas said. “It let me spend one last week at the beach during a time I would have been at school last year.”
Even though we don’t always go over our snow day limit, if we do then this year it could make spring break only six days including weekends as opposed to a 10-day break. Vacationing in the extra week before school started was nice, but if it was kept the same way it was we would have had five more days without school, leaving room for vacations in any of those three day weekends that have now been taken. Coming back on Tuesday and only having a four-day week is great, but if school started a week earlier students would get the four day-week just in the second week versus the first.
Coming back later this year was great while it lasted but now that we’re back it doesn’t make a difference whether we came back on the Sept. 5 or Aug. 30. This year students only have one non-holiday day off from school when three professional days were taken from the students and staff. This winter if we end up having three snow days it means one to two less days of spring break, leaving days that were planned for vacations for a long time to be abandoned or even turned into missed days of school. “The thought of losing days from our spring break makes it seem like that extra week wasn’t worth it,” sophomore Adam Greenberg said.
The loss of professional days, half days, and potential days in spring break makes going back to the way the school year used to be a better option for not only the students, but staff and parents too. The extra week of summer was a great choice when you look at it from the outside, but when you take another look, all it did was take away days that give people a break from school.