In 2018, WO will begin before Labor Day

Nayeli Arredondo

“Did you know school is starting before Labor Day next year?”  “Yea I’m so mad.” This might be a conversation you heard as you walked into school on the first day, and sadly these claims are true. For anyone that’s not a senior, you might be pretty upset. While West Ottawa students have been accustomed to starting after Labor Day, other schools were not so lucky. For example, Holland High School has been starting in August for over two years now. And Holland students have strong opinions about starting early.


  Jr. Ramen Pena, who goes to Holland High School said, “I’m glad Holland isn’t the only ones starting early. And I wasn’t surprised, I seen it coming eventually.” While students in other schools are probably celebrating, the students at WO are not happy that their summers are about to be cut short.


  “I don’t really mind starting early but it would be nice to have an extra two weeks of summer,” Pena said. “But starting early doesn’t feel good knowing the kids that go to WO get to sleep in, while we have to sit in a classroom tired from not getting much sleep.” Pena has once considered going to West Ottawa just to get to start after Labor Day, but I can imagine that thought is long gone.


  “I don’t like having to start before Labor Day, but it feels the same as if starting after Labor Day I guess,” Jimmy Sanchez, an eighth grader that also attends Holland said. “I’ve been going to school that starts in August for a year now but I can tell you I would be happy if I could start in September again,” Sanchez said. “But at least we won’t be the only ones suffering from a short summer.”


  Jr. Mario Hernandez, another student that goes to Holland, said he had mixed feelings. “I mean it [stinks] because I’m moving back to West Ottawa so I’m pretty bummed about it starting in August next year. But on the upside starting early kinda pays off since you end school early.” Hernandez had said he would be glad if he got to start after Labor Day again. “It would mean more time to relax and more time to get back our normal sleeping schedule.” Hernandez said sadly, “But advice I could give you is go to bed early and start sleeping early over the summer.”


  Even though starting early may be a let down to some kids the teachers are actually okay with it. Stacey Crowell, a teacher at Rockford High School, has some thoughts. “We’ve enjoyed the more gradual entry into the school year with four days of school for the first two weeks.  Last year we enjoyed a full 16-day Christmas/winter break and this year we have a 15-day break without extending the school year. Several of our teachers prefer a shorter summer to help reduce summer slide as well.  Of course, it is a little bit of a disappointment to end summer earlier, but getting back into the school routine isn’t all that bad either.” It appears that teachers and students agree that it’s something to get used to.


  Even though some students are reluctant to get up on an early summer day, starting early does have its perks. For instance, we get longer breaks. Also, we won’t be completely lost when we go back to school and the teachers talk about what we learned from the year before. But even if starting in August has its advantages, we’ll definitely miss having a long summer.