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Lawmaker pushes back on post Labor Day school start

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The authority board will oversee the state's new Education Achievement System.

State representative Kurt Heise (R-Plymouth Township) has sponsored a bill to reverse a law in effect since 2006 requiring all public schools in Michigan to start after Labor Day. That law was passed to support the tourism industry by extending the vacation season, but Heise says it has made little difference to tourism revenues while burdening schools with a very inconvenient schedule.

The law would provide an option for schools to start before Labor Day as long as the preceding Friday was still a vacation day. "That way, everybody's guaranteed a four day weekend," Heise says.

"I think that's still good for the tourism industry, and I think it provides more flexibility for school districts to set their schedules."

The added flexibility, Heise says, would help schools that have a lot of snow days, which otherwise might have to be made up in June.

According to Heise, support from teachers and school districts has been "overwhelming."

House Bill 4396 is currently in front of the House Education Committee, and Heise says they are hoping to have a hearing before the end of May.