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School After Labor Day to Become a Reality in Montgomery County

MCPS Releases 2017-2018 School Calendar, Complies with Gov. Hogan’s Executive Order

The Board of Education approved the start and end dates for the 2017-2018 school year at its meeting held on Tuesday, Nov. 15. The 2017-2018 school year will begin on Tuesday, September 5, 2017, and the last day of school will be no later than Friday, June 15, 2018.

In August, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan issued an executive order that mandates all Maryland public schools start after Labor Day, conclude by June 15, and include 180 days of instruction. The Board had approved a resolution on October 10 stating its preference to adopt a calendar for the 2017-2018 school year that would begin prior to Labor Day and asked Superintendent Jack R. Smith to apply to the State Board for a waiver of the start date before Labor Day.

However, MCPS is not likely to be eligible for a waiver due to Governor Hogan’s amended executive order that has further restricted the conditions under which local school boards could apply for and be granted a waiver of the time frame.

MCPS said that there are many specific components, including professional days and make-up days for emergency or inclement weather school closings, that MCPS staff will need to further analyze to determine how best to implement the instructional and operational aspects of the 2017–2018 school year in the required time frame.

RockvilleView.com reported that Board Member Patricia O’Neill made the motion and explained the reasoning behind the BOE’s action. The Board took an oath of office to abide by the law so they could not ignore the order, as some state representatives had suggested. Although the Attorney General issued an opinion that indicated the order could be challenged in court, but such action could prove costly and delay the adoption of the calendar which would hinder the ability of families to make plans for next year.

MCPS said that the staff will continue to work through the implementation issues for the structure of the school year and bring one or more proposed calendars to the Board for action at the December 13, 2016, meeting.