East Penn may Have to Open Before Labor Day
Superintendent Thomas L. Seidenberger tells school board that other districts in Lehigh County are considering pre-Labor Day opening and that East Penn may be forced to follow along.
It’s possible that East Penn Schools could be open for business a week earlier than usual next year – welcoming students back into the classroom before Labor Day, according to East Penn Superintendent Thomas L. Seidenberger.
Seidenberger told the East Penn Board of School Directors Monday night that he wanted to give them a “heads up” that East Penn may have no choice in adopting an earlier opening date, since many neighboring districts already have moved in that direction.
And, Seidenberger said, those districts that haven't done it yet are seriously considering it, naming East Penn rival Parkland School District as one of the districts that will probably implement a pre-Labor Day start. Shifting the start date back a week is a topic that has come up at the superintendent meetings he attends, Seidenberger explained.
One of the motivating factors that may leave East Penn no option but to make the calendar change, he said, comes from the fact that other school districts that also send students to the Lehigh Career & Technical Institute return to school before Labor Day.
"The good news," Seidenberger said, "is there is safety in numbers."
Board member Alan Earnshaw said that he would have no problem supporting a pre-Labor Day start to school. "By that point my kids are ready and my wife is even readier," he said.
Board President Charles Ballard pointed out that there is a bill before the legislature in Harrisburg every year that proposes to make the start date for public schools in Pennsylvania prior to Labor Day. It never gets passed, he said, because of push-back by the amusement industry.
Seidenberger said he will make a recommendation to the board on the pre-Labor Day start by December.