Session produced no change to Labor Day school startby Tom Weber, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — One issue lawmakers did not address before ending their session last night was whether schools should be allowed to start their next year before Labor Day.
State law forbids districts from starting before Labor Day - with some exceptions.
But this year, Labor Day isn't until September 7th, and many districts wanted to start before that. Resort owners in Minnesota's cabin country say they need the teens as hired help for that last big weekend of the summer.
One effort in the session's final days would have allowed schools to start before Labor Day, but they would have also had to take off the Thursday and Friday before the holiday - to make it a five day weekend. That effort failed in the state House last weekend. It probably wouldn't have matter for the 2009-2010 school year because districts have already set their calendars.
But it's possible the debate will return to the Capitol next year, though - since Labor Day in 2010 falls on September 6th.
Minneapolis Schools will start before Labor Day this fall. They're utilizing an exception that allows for an early start to accommodate a certain amount of construction at school buildings.
Fergus Falls, Hopkins, St. Louis Park, St. James, and Milaca are also starting early because of that exception in the law, according to the Minnesota Department of Education. The department, though, adds that list of schools starting early might be incomplete because schools are under no requirement that they're utilizing the exception and starting early.