Senate staffers said the report would be released Friday.
Georgia School Boards Association policy and legislative services director Angela Palm said while a discussion about better coordinating the calendar for students in college dual-enrollment classes is a worthwhile, she believes start dates should be decided by local school districts. She thinks the committee is really an attempt to help businesses.
“They’re clearly trying to do this to create a summer work force,” Palm, who attended Thursday’s meeting.
During a committee meeting last week, businessmen testified about losing summer workers to early school starts, depriving the students of money and on-the-job learning. And entertainment and tourism businesses testified about losing customers.
Gooch also hopes the committee’s work will spark a conversation about pushing mandated tests, such as the Georgia Milestones, to near the end of the school year to increase classroom instruction time.
Gooch attended the meeting with his 10-year-old son, Sawyer, a fourth-grader. Asked when he wanted the school year to begin, Sawyer replied, “After July.”
His birthday is in July, his dad explained.
Here’s are proposed and approved start dates for the 2019-20 school year in various metro Atlanta school districts:
Monday, July 29: Rockdale County
Thursday, Aug. 1: Cherokee, Cobb, Forsyth and Henry counties; Decatur and Marietta city schools
Monday, Aug. 5: Clayton, DeKalb, Fayette and Gwinnett counties
Wednesday, Aug. 7: Douglas and Hall counties
Monday, Aug. 12: Atlanta Public Schools, Fulton County
Why It Matters:
There are an estimated 1.8 million students in Georgia’s public school system. Many parents arrange their summer vacation on the school calendar and some say they have trouble finding child care during the year because of school breaks. Proponents to changes to the calendar say it’s an issue of jobs, costs and safety, citing concerns such as children on school buses during late July and early August, some of the hottest times of the year.