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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

School start dates: Does the Florida Legislature interfere too much?



imgres.jpegOkaloosa school officials had planned to start classes this year in early August. They had to change the date after the district failed to meet the state's "high performing" standard, leaving the system subject to the law that school may not begin earlier than two weeks before Labor Day.

Next year, the district again wants to begin school in early August, but can't.

That has superintendent Alexis Tibbetts unhappy, the Northwest Florida Daily News reports. She wants lawmakers to reset the rules, to give school leaders the flexibility they need to offer instruction when it's needed.

"I feel like the state legislators' intrusion into when local school districts start school is overreaching," Tibbetts told the Daily News. "The legislators should not tell school districts when to start school."

It's well known that lawmakers stepped in at the request of the tourism industry, that wanted to keep families coming to attractions longer in the summer. Is it time for them to listen to the school leaders now?

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 28, 2011 12:09pm]


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