NH Gov. Chris Sununu Pushes for School to Start After Labor Day - NECN
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NH Gov. Chris Sununu Pushes for School to Start After Labor Day

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    Starting the School Year Later in NH

    The majority of districts in New Hampshire are already back to school, but Gov. Chris Sununu is pushing for later start dates in the future.

    (Published Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2018)

    The majority of school districts in New Hampshire are already back to school, and Gov. Chris Sununu thinks it's too early for that.

    Sununu says next year, schools across the state should be mandated to start after Labor Day.

    On a hot day like Wednesday, there's no better place to be than an air-conditioned arcade like Funspot in Laconia. But it was relatively quiet because most new Hampshire kids have already gone back to school.

    "I feel pretty bad for them because they're not having fun right now, they're stuck in a classroom," said Chris Puzzo, who will be a senior at Merrimack High School.

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    He and his brothers are savoring the last days of summer. They're a few of the lucky ones who don't go back to school until next week.

    "We're going to Santa's Village, we're camping there," said Chris' dad, Paul. "Today, we're down here at Funspot for a while, then doing the go-karts."

    He says they wouldn't be doing any of this if his kids went back to school this week. And that's exactly why Sununu says all New Hampshire schools should start after Labor Day.

    "That's a loss of huge opportunity. We are still a tourism driven state and we need to maximize everything we can get," Sununu told NBC10 Boston on Wednesday.

    Bob Lawton, who opened Funspot 66 years ago, says it used to be the norm for kids to go back to school after the holiday, but that's changed over the years.

    This week is no longer the "last hoorah." Instead, it's slower than normal.

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    "Labor Day is still a good weekend, but it's not like old days, it really isn't," Lawton said.

    So, he fully supports the governor's push to take back the holiday weekend, because while families spend time, they also spend money — keeping seasonal businesses afloat and that last week of summer alive.

    "I think it's great. Extend the summer, that's what everybody wants. It's good for everyone," said Moultonborough mom Meghan Kaiser.

    Sununu created a commission to study exactly how a mandatory later start day would impact everything from academics to athletic programs and tourism in the state.

    The commission's report is due at the end of November.

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