Board denies Henrico request for early school start

School Bus

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) – The State Board of Education voted to reject Henrico County’s waiver request to start the school year before Labor Day weekend. The vote to deny the waiver was unanimous, according to Virginia Department of Education spokesman Charles Pyle.

Henrico School Board members believed if students got into school earlier, they’d get an overall better education and get a head start on getting ready for Advanced Placement exams. In March, Henrico School Superintendent Pat Russo told CBS 6 he’d heard a lot of support for the plan.

“They like the thought process behind it because of the exams given before the holiday break,” Dr. Russo. said in a March interview. “I speak to the high school classes, the students.  They’ve very enthusiastic about having that happen so there’s a lot of support out there.”

The Virginia Hospitality and Travel Association argued against the early school start. In May, attorney Tom Lisk told CBS 6 an early start to school could have a negative impact on Virginia’s tourism industry.

“The impact of just those two weeks of Labor Day means hundreds of millions of dollars to the tourism industry, as well as to the state economy,” Lisk said at the time.

This is a developing story.

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