So my district will again have their schedule dictated to them by an amusement park

Discussion in 'General Education' started by gr3teacher, Mar 20, 2015.

  1. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Mar 20, 2015

    (Sorry, this is a rant topic)

    Virginia has this delightful law known as the King's Dominion Law. King's Dominion is one of the big amusement parks in Virginia, and they have spent a good deal of money buying politicians (pardon me... I mean "lobbying"). One of their biggest successes is the King's Dominion law, which makes it illegal for school districts to begin school in Virginia prior to Labor Day. The only exceptions are districts who average 8 or more snow days in 5 years over a 10 year period. Those districts get a waiver, and are allowed to start earlier. Our district is one day short of qualifying for a waiver, and today was probably the last realistic chance of there being a snow day. Our new (second year) superintendent has made no secret whatsoever of her desire to start school before Labor Day, and the school board and other upper level administrators support the idea also.

    As far as starting school early... whatever. I don't really care. I see the benefits to it (five full "routine builder" days, a three day weekend, then off and running with the school year) and I see the drawbacks (a three day weekend that early in the school year? Messes up late-season vacation plans). If I were ruler of the world, I'd probably vote to start a week earlier and end a week earlier, but that isn't where my problem lies. My problem is that a privately owned company has the ability to singlehandedly dictate the schedule to one of the twelve largest districts in the United States. If my district wants to start earlier, that should be a decision for their administrators, school board members, and community stakeholders, NOT a stinking amusement park six county/county-equivalents away!

    I really wish my district has just used a snow day today, as a "F you" to King's Dominion, but alas.

    And since somebody will surely point out me posting at 8:30 on a school day and think I just wanted a free day off... I'm already off using a pre-arranged sick day, and I would have lost that day whether school was in session or not, so there's nothing gained or lost personally.
     
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  3. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Mar 20, 2015

    I have to sympathize with you. We have had the same problem through the years with the theme parks in central fl. They have fought to have school start later every time the subject comes up. They claim it is because they don't want to ruin late summer vacations. It is really because they don't want to lose their cheap summer help.
     
  4. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    Mar 20, 2015

    Agreed.
     
  5. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Mar 20, 2015

    I'm totally blown away at this concept! Bad amusement parks!
     
  6. vateacher757

    vateacher757 Cohort

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    Mar 20, 2015

    Yep the bolded is the real reason.

    I am in VA as well and in the area under the rule of The Kings Dominion Law, not all areas of VA fall under that law. I have family in another part of VA and they start school before Labor Day.
     
  7. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Mar 20, 2015

    Well, Virginia isn't the only state that allows such things to try & dictate the school schedule. In Michigan, you need to have a waiver to start before Labor Day. Or at least you used to need one. Not sure if that's still true or not. Summer "ends" with Labor Day weekend & begins with Memorial Day. Or maybe it was required that the kids have a 4 day weekend for one of those weekends.
     
  8. ms.irene

    ms.irene Connoisseur

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    Mar 20, 2015

    I didn't know about this, and my little brother is about to graduate from HS in VA! My step-sibs went to HS there and I never knew this was the reason for their late start. In my district in CA, we start back mid-August and are done the first week in June. Well as annoying as the reason for the late start is, at least it means I will probably be able to attend his graduation in mid-June!
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Mar 20, 2015

    Schools in NJ traditionally start the Tuesday after Labor Day, but fluctuates depending on other holidays and how late Labor Day falls. Next school year in my district has teacher PD day on Tuesday and students Wed-Friday before Labor Day, off on the 7th for Labor Day, off on the 14th for Rosh Hashanah, off on the 23rd for Yom Kippur...If we didn't start when we do next year, we'd only have 16 student days for the month!:eek:
     
  10. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    Mar 20, 2015

    Some HS in NJ are coming around to an earlier start date, and the lower grades that feed those districts are starting to follow suit. In the grand scheme of things, we still work the same number of days, so I try not to let it make me crazy. I find it most inconvenient when taking grad classes, since we aren't in sync with the universities, greatly limiting our class choice, since we are still in session. Do I dislike being in school late in June? For the most part, yes. Do I like not starting until after Labor Day? For the most part, yes. And there you have it - you can't have an early end to the school year and start late, unless you are prepared to give up a lot of days off for breaks, etc. That, I am sure, is the topic of another thread that hasn't been started yet (recently).
     
  11. bros

    bros Phenom

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    As long as the school has AC, it's okay to end in June.

    None of the schools in the district I live in do, though.
     
  12. Nietzsche

    Nietzsche Companion

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    Mar 21, 2015

    Isn't Labor Day weekend usually warmer than the first week in June? Before my kids started school, we would vacation at the beach in September since the weather was usually excellent and the beaches weren't crowded.

    BTW, I just read where a local school district had issues making up snow days. They had scheduled snow makeup days in January and February but then had to cancel school after those dates. They are adding inservice and student half days to make up for the snow days.
     
  13. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Mar 21, 2015

    We have always started the Tuesday after Labour Day and we are in session right up 'til the end of June. I just checked our school year calendar for next year--the students start September 8th (teachers have a PA Day on the 3rd) and finish June 29th (teachers finish on the 30th).
     
  14. Jerseygirlteach

    Jerseygirlteach Groupie

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    Mar 21, 2015

    We usually start school right after Labor Day, but since it comes late next year, we will start the week before. Somehow, we still manage to go up until nearly the end of June, though.

    BTW, my family is visiting King's Dominion for the first time this summer. :)
     

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