Post Labor Day school start boosts economy

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Annapolis, MD -- Kids are going to like the results of a new report on the economic effects of delaying the start of the school year until after Labor Day.

According to a new study from Salisbury University, holding off on the first day of class has  “a clear, positive impact on both state and local government economies” with a total net economic impact of up to $115 million.

“This independent analysis validates what we already know: starting school after Labor Day is good for Maryland families, good for our local businesses and good for the Maryland economy,” said Comptroller Peter Franchot. “At a time when the state is considering new sources of revenue for our public schools, this adds millions of dollars to our state’s coffers, all while supporting great family-owned, small businesses and sustaining summer employment.”

BEACON’s analysis found a total net economic impact -- incorporating direct, indirect and induced benefits -- of close to $58 million for six additional days of summer vacation and nearly $115 million for 12 extra days, depending upon when Labor Day falls on the calendar each year.

Additionally, the report estimates additional wages earned by workers to be between $2.875 million and $5.75 million during the final days of summer with local and state government revenues increasing between $8 million and $16 million, also depending upon the timing of Labor Day.

The study’s findings are based on estimates that approximately 70 percent of all tourism-related expenditures statewide can be attributed to Maryland residents and data from tourism offices that show the majority of end-of-summer travel by Marylanders occurs within the state.

“I am thrilled to see the positive results and increased economic impact caused by a post-Labor Day school start in Maryland; however, I am not surprised," said Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan. "Worcester County has accomplished a successful post-Labor Day start date for years and students in our schools have continued to thrive. In fact, our very own Ocean City Elementary School was named a Blue Ribbon School for a second time in 2018."

Tourism is the state’s 10th largest employment industry, supporting more than 200,000 jobs and producing over $15 billion, which represents four percent of the state’s total economy.

The nonpartisan task force, created by the Maryland General Assembly and appointed by then-Governor Martin O’Malley, recommended a post-Labor Day start by a vote of 12 to 3 in May 2014 after meeting for nearly a year to consider all aspects of the issue.

Public support for starting school after Labor Day has been strong and consistent throughout Maryland among teachers, parents and the business and agricultural community. More than 24,000 Marylanders signed the “Let Summer Be Summer” petition in 2016 -- endorsing the initiative that has given families more time together, provided teachers and students with a longer break to recharge without impacting summer learning loss, and afforded rural Marylanders the opportunity to participate in the Maryland State Fair, which runs the 10 days prior to Labor Day each year.


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