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Brunswick Co. gets waiver for 180-day school year

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — For the second year in a row, Brunswick County Schools has received a waiver to give it flexibility in its school calendar. The waiver from the state Board of Education lets the district keep its calendar at 180 instructional days instead of 185 for the 2012-2013 school year.

The legislature mandated in its budget passed in summer 2011 that North Carolina’s school year would extend to 185 instructional days. Because of the late notice, many districts, including Brunswick County, received a waiver for the 2011-2012 school year allowing them to keep their already adopted 180-day calendars.

Under the waiver for 2012-2013, Brunswick County Schools must use the five waived days for mandatory work days for staff. The district says it also gives it flexibility for make-up days if school has to be canceled.

When the legislature added the extra days, critics said it would be difficult for schools to fit make-up days into a calendar that is already tight. State law also mandates schools cannot start classes before August 25 or end after June 10. That law is meant to protect the state’s tourism industry, which says it relies on seasonal student labor and vacationing families during the summer.

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