Last day to sign petition for later school start date Friday - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Last day to sign petition for later school start date Friday

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The deadline is quickly approaching for a petition to change the Sioux Falls School District's start date.

Friday is the last day to sign the petition. Organizers of the petition want to get this issue on the ballot and let the people decide. 

This petition comes after the Sioux Falls School District passed three calendar years with class starting before Labor Day.

Wendy McDonnel thinks a later start date makes more sense and decided it was time to have the voters' voices heard.

"All along, all we've asked for is a compromise and so through this referral process it goes back to the state law which basically says schools tarts after Labor Day," said McDonnel.

Around 4,600 signatures are needed to get the later start date issue on the ballot.

"What we're aware of is about 2,500 but we have about 500 petition sheets that are out there so we feel pretty good about where we're at in the process," said McDonnel.

Sioux Falls School District Board President Doug Morison says he's received virtually no phone calls in his six years about the school calendar.
"We had one woman come down and address the school board on the issue but other than that my phone doesn't ring off the hook and I don't get a lot of e-mails," said Morrison.

McDonnel says there are many advantages to school starting after Labor Day.
"One is families and that's an okay thing. Everybody's reason is personal. It may be they're a small business and they're seasonal and maybe this is big time for them to be able to have their seasonal businesses," said McDonnel.

What's best  for the students, Morrison says, is to wrap up the semester before the holiday break.
"It lets them get their grades and their GPA's before the semester ends which helps them apply for college and scholarships and things like that," said Morrison.

If the correct number of valid signatures is collected, then the issue will be put to a public vote.

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