When should the school year start? Let VBCPS know with this survey

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Virginia Beach City Public Schools want to know when you think the official start of the school year should be.

The Virginia General Assembly passed new legislation amending provisions in the Code of Virginia regarding the setting of school calendars and the first day that students may be required to attend school. As a result, it is no longer necessary for school divisions to seek waivers to begin the school year before Labor Day.

“Students in Northern Virginia and west of 95 right now will have two to three more weeks of preparations for those tests -  including the SOLs - than for our students," Superintendent Dr. Aaron Spence told News 3.

School leaders said it could also allow more flexibility after bad weather and open the option for a two-week winter break.

The suggestion is getting mixed opinions from parents.

“I think we have enough time for the kids to learn, to have a big school year. I just don’t see a reason for it," Danijel Velicki explained.

“Where I used to work, we had year-round school. They retained a lot more than having a long break," Carmen Daly mentioned.

Thursday night, the district sent an email to families asking parents to take part in a survey about whether they prefer a pre-Labor Day start or would like to keep the start of the academic year after the holiday.

Based on the online survey, both the Virginia Beach Hotel Association and Virginia Beach Restaurant Association prefer they keep the school calendar the way it is.

"Because Labor Day is a big end-of-summer weekend for them and they’d like to signal to broader community that Virginia Beach is open for business," Dr. Spence explained.

After the survey is completed, a workgroup will look into how they’d shift the school calendar. We’re told classes would likely wrap before mid-June.

Related: Suffolk schools looking to start before Labor Day, but should they? 

The survey is open until Friday, October 11.

Click here to share your thoughts.

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