Moon landing! Pol want to give kids Lunar New Year off

Horsing around: Celebrate the lunar New Year in Brooklyn
Photo by Carol Rosegg

A Brooklyn Heights councilman wants your kids to skip another day.

A handful of politicians are pushing for the city to recognize the Lunar New Year as an official school holiday. State Sen. Daniel Squadron (D–Brooklyn Heights) hosted a rally on Sunday calling for the state to pass a law that would allow kids to celebrate the holiday with their families tomorrow — and forever after — without having to miss a day of school.

“This has become one of the most important holidays in the city and too many families are forced to choose between celebrating the most important holiday of the year and going to school,” Squadron said. “As New York changes, our holidays should too.”

Daniel Squadron
Daniel Squadron

Squadron said he has been working on ways to avoid losing another school day, such as possibly turning the day into a professional development day when teachers attend but students do not.

“It is certainly a solvable problem,” said Squadron.

In heavily Asian areas of the city such as Sunset Park, close to 80 percent of kids are absent on the Lunar New Year when it falls during the school week, Squadron said.

Lunar eclipse: Assemblyman Sheldon Silver, center, stands with members of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association. He and State Sen. Daniel Squadron are calling to make Lunar New Year a school holiday.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

Since the assembly is not currently in session and the city tends to not change the school calendar mid-year, Brooklyn students did not get last Friday off.

Mayor DeBlasio said he is also working to make the holiday official soon.

Reach reporter Danielle Furfaro at [email protected] or by calling (718) 260-2511. Follow her at twitter.com/DanielleFurfaro.
Triboro bridge: Brooklyn State Sen. Daniel Squadron, second from left, inspects the shoulder of Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, center, as Queens Assemblyman Ron Kim, left, squeezes in some medidtation.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini