Wednesday, November 13, 2019
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Poll: Marylanders want school to start after Labor Day

A poll of 708 Maryland residents by the Sarah T Hughes Field Politics Center at Goucher College says 71 percent of those asked support delaying the start of school until after Labor Day. Only 17 percent oppose the idea, the Daily Record reports.

State Comptroller Peter Franchot has started a petition, which he plans to present to the General Assembly when it convenes in January, urging lawmakers to dictate to the state’s 24 public school systems that classes start after Labor Day. Starting later will, he says, increase revenue for businesses, especially in vacation spots like Ocean City and Deep Creek Lake, and bring in more tax revenue for the state.

Educators have opposed any changes to the law that take control of the school start date away from local boards of education and give it to the General Assembly. However, a task force, which included business executives, parents, and educators, made a recommendation that the start of school be delayed until after Labor Day.

The poll simply adds another voice to the argument. Like most of the state’s public school superintendents, we also oppose pushing the start date for schools back by law, although we initially recognized this as an opportunity for schools to build communication bridges with their communities.

What’s the poll’s margin of error? Is the conclusion justified? See Common Core math standard in statistics HSS.IC.B.4 for more information.

Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.

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