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Parents Want Post-Labor Day Start In New Canaan

NEW CANAAN, Conn. – Classes in New Canaan began Tuesday, taking children away from long days of play and camping and into classrooms to meet new teachers and classmates.

But some parents visiting The New Canaan Daily Voice's Facebook page say that the school year should start after the summer’s last major holiday, Labor Day.

Parent Hennika Burger was in full support of a later start. “Yes after Labour day,” she wrote.

Fellow New Canaan Daily Voice reader Bertha Barosky made her statement simple. “AFTER LABOR DAY!!!!!” she wrote.

Superintendent of Schools Mary Kolek said she understands parents might want a later start date. However, the district has to plan for an entire calendar year, including scheduling other school breaks, such as spring break in April, and accommodate time for state exams in March.

“If we’re going to start later, we would have to find other time during the year,” Kolek said. “Based on community feedback, the (New Canaan Board of Education) felt they were being responsive to the community.”

New Canaan schools usually have 182 instructional days, two more than what’s required by the state Board of Education, and the school year cannot go beyond the third week of June. 

Kolek said people looking at Labor Day alone should consider the entire calendar. “It’s not just a question of when we start, but a question of the other needs and issues that go into building the entire school calendar,” she said. “I understand the longing for those last days of summer, but this is one way to provide balance.”

Dana Shapiro Salvatore was among those who said to leave well enough alone. "I say before Labor Day ....going earlier means getting out earlier...Getting out mid-late June is just ridiculous - let's keep it consistent with the rest of the country," she wrote.

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