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Lawmakers postpone mandate for more class time

A law requiring more class time in Hawaii public schools is being delayed.

The Hawaii House and Senate voted today to approve a bill that phases in instructional time requirements over the next few years. The legislation now advances to Gov. Neil Abercrombie.

The measure gives high schools and middle schools three more years to increase class time, while half of elementary schools would have to teach a minimum number of hours starting next year. All elementary schools would have to raise class time for the 2012-2013 school year.

Lawmakers said an immediate jump in instructional time would create difficulties in adjusting school schedules, and that the state can’t afford to pay teachers additional money.

A requirement for a 180-day school year remains in place.

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