Missouri Governor Signs Law Pushing Back School Start Date

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Some Missouri school children could get an extra week out of school in August next year.

Gov. Mike Parson on Thursday signed legislation to push back the start date for public schools by an extra four days.

Current state law allows schools to start no sooner than 10 days before the first Monday in September. The law changes that to 14 days beginning next school year.

Schools now can start earlier if the school board gives notice, holds a public meeting and votes to do so. Districts won’t have that option next year.

Backers say pushing back school could help Missouri’s tourism industry by giving an extra week for summer vacations.

School organizations have criticized the change, arguing that local school boards should be able to decide when school begins.