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Bills before the NC Legislature...pertaining to school calendars

February 2007 - House Bill 359, RESTORE FLEXIBILITY TO THE SCHOOL CALENDAR
After the "Crossover" date of May 24, HB 359 remains the ONLY bill with school calendar implications that is still under consideration for the 2007-2008 session.
Follow the progress of this law.

This law would allow SYSTEM-WIDE waivers to be granted to any county that has a Community College or University in the geographic area, Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate Programs, block scheduling, or emergency situations.

This bill has been PASSED by the House, and it is now in the hands of the Senate. If it is passed by the Senate and signed by the Governor, it becomes law and would take effect for the 2007-2008 school year.

The position of SOS-NC: If this bill were to pass, EVERY school system in the state would qualify for and be granted a waiver from the August 25 start date, completely nullifying the school calendar law.

Main Sponsors: Larry Bell (retired school superintendent) and Marvin Lucas (retired principal)

Bills that are listed below this point are ones that DID NOT gain approval by one of the Legislative arms before the May 24, 2007 "Crossover" deadline. Because they did not make it out of committee, they are ineligible for consideration for either this year or next year. That's great news! However, we are leaving information about these bills here as a sobering reminder of the determination of those who want to overturn the current school calendar law!

March 2007 -- House Bill 570, SCHOOL CALENDAR FLEXIBILITY/MOORE COUNTY
Follow the progress of this bill.


This bill would permanently exempt Moore County schools from the school calendar law.

This bill passed its first reading in the house and has been referred to the House Committee on Education.

The position of SOS-NC: No school systems should be permanently exempted from the school calendar law. Provisions are in place under current law that allow waivers to be granted on a school-by-school basis for legitimate Educational Purposes or system-wide for inclement weather.

Sole Sponsor: Joe Boylan

February 2007--Senate Bill 61 (SB61), WAIVER OF SCHOOL START DATE/SOME COUNTIES
Follow the progress of this bill.

A law granting a PERMANENT WAIVER to certain North Carolina counties, allowing them to not have to comply with the present School Calendar Law (SL 2004-180).

This proposal has been sent to the Committee on Education/ Higher Education for review.

In part, this bill reads:

The General Assembly finds that the history of severe weather conditions and other emergency situations in certain parts of the State make it impracticable for some counties to comply with the required school opening and closing dates; therefore, the Alexander, Ashe, Watauga, and Wilkes County School Administrative Units are hereby granted a permanent waiver from the required school opening and closing dates under G.S. 115C-84.2(d).

The position of SOS-NC: The in-force School Calendar Law clearly makes provision for school systems to be exempted from the law if specified criteria are met. If these systems are eligible, they need only apply to the State Board of Education. In fact, many have. There is no need to clutter up the books with extraneous and redundant laws. And entering into the game of enacting laws with such vagaries as "and other emergency situations" opens the floodgates for more laws to follow.

Main Sponsors: Steve Goss and Ed Jones

February 2007 - Senate Bill 461/House Bill 473, CHANGE SCHOOL STARTING DATE
Follow the progress of this bill (Senate version).
Follow the progress of this bill (House version).

A law that would change the school start date from August 25 to the second Monday in August (which could occur as early as August 8).

These bills have been referred to the House and Senate Committees on Education.

The position of SOS-NC: No changes should be made to the required August 25 school start date.

Main Sponsor of Senate bill: John Snow
Main Sponsors of House bill: Ray Rapp (college administrator), Bob England, Martha Alexander, Susan Fisher

March 2007 - House Bill 1123, School Calendar Flexibility...two counties
Follow the progress of this bill.

A law that would permanently exempt Martin County and Pitt County schools from observance of opening and closing dates under G.S. 115C-84.2(d).

This bill passed on its first reading and is now been referred to the House and Senate Committee on Education.

The position of SOS-NC: No school systems should be permanently exempted from the school calendar law. Provisions are in place under current law that allow waivers to be granted on a school-by-school basis for legitimate Educational Purposes or system-wide for inclement weather.

Sole Sponsor: Edith Warren (retired educator)

March 2007 - House Bill 1057, Restore Flexibility of School Calendars
Follow the progress of this bill.

A law that would allow local school boards to establish school start dates as early as August 10. This law has an INCREDIBLE number of components that must be read to be believed. But in a nutshell, its design is to nullify the provisions of the present school calendar law. Its main sponsor is Larry Bell, a former school superintendent, who is also the sponsor of a number of other bills related to school calendars. In typical speed-it-up-fashion, this bill, should it become law, would take effect on JULY 1, 2007, barely a month before the date when some schools, under its provisions, could open their doors for classes.

This bill passed on its first reading and is now in the House Education Committee.

The position of SOS-NC: No changes should be made to the required August 25 school start date.

Main Sponsors: R. Phillip Haire and Larry Bell

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