Joey Barnes

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Video: School Districts Can Choose When To Start Academic Year

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JACKSON, Miss. (AP) – Mississippi schools won’t be forced to start the academic year in late August, as they had been expecting to do.

Gov. Phil Bryant on Wednesday signed Senate Bill 2571. It negates a previous law that would’ve delayed the start of the school year until at least the third Monday in August.

Gulf Coast tourism officials had pushed for the later start date, saying it would boost the economy by giving families more time for vacation. Legislators passed and Bryant signed such a law in 2012, with the provision that the later start date would take effect during the 2014-15 school year.

Under the new law, local school districts can choose their own start date. Many Mississippi districts start their academic year in early to mid-August.