School begins early in '02


Sept. 13, 2002, midnight | By Zach Mellman | 21 years, 9 months ago

Many students view August 28 as too early


Students at Blair and all other Montgomery County Public School students returned to their respective schools on August 28, August 27 for freshmen, earlier than in most past years. The yearly pilgrimage usually occurs the day after Labor Day, which was September 3 this year, however, this year school started before Labor Day.

Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) spokesperson Katherine Harrison says that more professional days and the primary elections contribute to this year's early start. "There are two professional days added," Harrison says," and this is an election year."

MCPS generally prefers to begin school after Labor Day. "Periodically we do start school before Labor Day. We'd like to be able to start school after Labor Day as much as we can in the future," she says.

Many students disapprove of the early start to the year. Junior Rafi Hill believes that summer break is getting far too short. "I feel like there is no summer anymore," says Hill. "Pretty soon our summer vacations will only be one month long."

Senior Manbubur Khan says that MCPS forgets that school is for the students and focused too much on the teachers. "They only did it for the teachers," he says.

For junior Scott Nguyen, the problem isn't just starting school before Labor Day, it is starting school mid-week. He says, "There's no point in going to school for three days and then having a three day weekend. It's awkward starting [school] in the middle of the week."

According to freshman Ekta Taneja, MCPS's decision makes this year's schedule unfair. "It's unfair because school ends on the same day (June 18), but it starts earlier," he said.

However, there are some students like senior Richie Manikat who supports MCPS's decision. He believes that starting school earlier helps students because it provides more breaks during the school. He says, "It's a good thing 'cause you get more days off during the year."

In addition to Blair's expanded school year, Montgomery County may be faced with few or no snow days yet again, yielding even more days of school than students may be anticipating.



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Zach Mellman. Zach Mellman was born on October 18, 1956 (he was held back once or twice). He has lived in Takoma Park, Maryland his entire life. He is currently a senior at Blair enrolled in honors classes. He is also a member of Blair's golf team, … More »

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