When schools stay open on Martin Luther King Day

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Today is a federal holiday, which means schools are closed in Washington, D.C. However in some states, districts have abandoned plans to observe Martin Luther King Jr. Day, and instead hold classes to make up for time lost during the recent record-setting spate of winter storms.

The decision to hold classes in some districts in Indiana isn’t sitting well with Mark Russell, director of education, family services and housing at the Indianapolis Urban League.

“Given the history of this nation and the unique role that race and race relations has played from its inception, this one long-hard-fought-for holiday—I would hope there would be some recognition that this is not just another holiday,” Russell told the Indianapolis Star.

A few years ago similar decisions to turn the holiday into a makeup day in Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina drew sharp criticism from civil rights leaders who said it was an insult to King’s memory.

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