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Three options for Baltimore County Schools calendar, vote to come in November

Posted at 10:24 PM, Oct 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-23 16:12:25-04

BALTIMORE COUNTY, Md. — The Baltimore County School Board is looking at three options for the 2020-2021 school calendar and on Tuesday night, they heard how the public wants them to vote.

Labor Day is September 7 next year, and the proposed calendars look at post-Labor Day and pre-Labor Day starts as well as a shorter spring break to end school earlier.

All of the dates could be affected by fill in days for inclement weather.

Option A is to start August 31, the last day would be June 11 and includes a 10 day Spring break from March 29 to April 5. Option B and C would move the start day to September 8, a day after Labor Day. Option B has a five day Spring break from Thursday April 1 to Monday April 5 and the last day of school would be June 15.

A teacher who took the podium Tuesday night supports that schedule.

“Since the change to after Labor Day I feel that my summer is finally being respected," they said. "I love what I do and I work very hard for 9-10 months of the year. I need to this time to refresh and regroup.”

Option C has a 10-day spring break, with a last day of school scheduled for June 21.

Local business owner Bill Paulshock says he hires mostly students and teachers for summer jobs and that Option A would hurt their ability to make summer money.

“Small business will not be able to afford to employ these people it will be too late in the summer, we will get other employment,” said Paulshock. “It’s a terrible loss so we decided to pick plan B.”

The majority of speakers were people of Muslim and Jewish faiths.

The Muslims were there because they want to see their two big holidays changed to days off instead of potential replacements to make up inclement weather days.

“We would have preference of a five day Spring break,” said Muhammad Jameer. “When you have a ten day spring break it’s more of a mini vacation, we need more instructional days.”

People of Jewish faith asking that their holidays are not used as professional development days but days off for the entire district.

“That’s very difficult for us,” a woman at the podium said. “Teachers don’t want to miss out on celebrating their holidays and being with their families, but they don’t want to miss out on professional development.”

Governor Hogan mandated that schools start after Labor Day In 2016– but this year that mandate was overruled so that each individual school board in the state can pick their start date.

A vote is expected to come on November 5.