Statement by AFT-NH President Douglas Ley on Governor Sununu’s School Calendar Position

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Bow, NH      SEPTEMBER 15, 2017

AFT-NH President Douglas Ley released the following statement about Gov. Chris Sununu’s recent suggestion that the State bar public school openings until after Labor Day:

 “Since there is no formal proposal yet upon the table or in front of the Legislature, AFT-NH has no official position.  Informally, I think our preference is to honor NH’s tradition of local control and keep decisions regarding school calendars in the hands of the local school boards.  If local voters mobilize and demand a change, I am sure those school boards and administrators will be responsive. 

“Schedules for teachers, para-educators, and school support staff are also guided by collective bargaining agreements, which may place some limitations upon manipulating school year schedules.  I would also be concerned with the suggestion to simply extend the school day by a few minutes each day, since in many districts part-time para-educators are on strict time schedules and to add time would have budgetary impacts on local taxpayers.  So the decision is more complex than it seems at first glance, and my personal preference is to continue to leave it in the hands of local decision-makers.” 

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