Lunar New Year is now a state holiday for public schools in New York. Governor Kathy Hochul signed legislation Saturday making it official, Newsday reports.
All public schools will be closed for one day on Lunar New Year.
“By designating Lunar New Year as an official school holiday, we are taking an important step in recognizing the importance of New York’s AAPI community and the rich diversity that makes New York so great,” said Hochul, according to WETM 18. “It is not just a day off from school – it is an opportunity for our children to learn about and celebrate their own or different cultures and traditions.”
Congresswoman Grace Meng joined the Governor for the signing.
“It was an honor to join Governor Hochul as she signed this historic bill and I applaud her for making it the law of the land in our state,” Meng said in a statement. “When I was in the State Assembly in 2009, I led the bill to establish a New York City school holiday for Lunar New Year, and I remember how people laughed at it. There were so many naysayers who told me that it would never happen.
“Now, look at how far we have come. I am proud of the work I have done to help get us to this point and I thank all who played a role as well. And in Congress, I am continuing the fight by pushing legislation I authored that would make Lunar New Year a federal holiday.”
The Asian Pacific Task Force played a pivotal role in developing and passing the legislation.
“Making Lunar New Year a holiday for New York’s public schools is a direct result of the hard work of the Assembly Majority and the dedicated members of our Asian Pacific Task Force,” Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said in a statement, according to Spectrum News.
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