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Franchot: Starting school after Labor Day would help economy

ANNAPOLIS — Maryland’s comptroller on Thursday called on schools to start after Labor Day in hopes of boosting the state’s economy, citing a report projecting a delay in beginning the school year could result in an additional $74.3 million in direct economic activity.

Peter Franchot

The report by the Bureau of Revenue Estimates projected that delaying the first day of school would result in $3.7 million in new wages and a separate $7.7 million in state and local revenue.

“The chance for families to spend precious time together and to build lifelong memories during that final, end-of-summer vacation has been lost by the decision to begin school a week, or even 10 days, before Labor Day,” Comptroller Peter Franchot said. “Not only does this cut into the opportunity for Marylanders to spend more time together as a family, but it also has a negative impact on small businesses.”

Franchot, a Democrat, said he is confident that Maryland school systems would not have to reduce the 180-day school year to adjust for a later start. He said Maryland’s 24 school systems could be left with flexibility to adjust winter and spring breaks or eliminating some of the school closure dates throughout the school calendar.

The comptroller’s office also noted that the fiscal impact of a later school start only includes direct economic benefit. A greater economic benefit would be realized through indirect and induced activity.