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Veterans Day will be a day on, not a day off, in Denver schools next year

Denver school board members at South High School. The board watched a video highlighting South's students.
Denver school board members at South High School. The board watched a video highlighting South's students.
J. Zubrzycki

The Denver school board voted tonight to approve a new school calendar that means Veterans Day will be a day in school rather than a holiday for students.

Board president Happy Haynes said that having school on Veterans Day will allow schools to acknowledge the country’s veterans more actively, potentially by partnering with veterans’ organization or having in-school events acknowledging and celebrating veterans.

“In the past it’s been a day off, and I think it was a day that was lost,” she said. “Many of our students and families had no idea why we had a day off in the middle of November…now it’s a day on.”

The district will provide guidance to schools about how to mark the holiday and has reached out to veterans’ groups in the city, Haynes said.

Board member Arturo Jimenez cast the lone vote against the calendar, saying that having the day in school does not guarantee that schools would mark or celebrate the holiday sufficiently. He suggested that the district have a day off on Monday to mark the holiday.

The calendar was developed by a district task force. The task force was aiming to attach days off to weekends rather than have having days floating in the middle of the week and to ensure that students are not in school during the hottest parts of the year, among other concerns.

The first day of school for students will be August 24 and the last day will be June 3. Students have full weeks off at Thanksgiving, Winter Holidays, and Spring Break.

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