The Connecticut state legislature, on Feb. 23, held a public hearing to discuss a bill that would designate Veterans Day as an official state holiday. If the legislation passes, public schools would be required to cancel classes for the occasion. The decision to observe the holiday is left to individual school districts.
The holiday originated as Armistice Day on Nov. 11, 1919, celebrating the one-year anniversary of the end of World War I. In 1926 Congress officially recognized the end of World War I with a concurrent resolution calling for an annual commemoration of the day. And, in 1938, Nov. 11 became a national holiday. Today, the day honors all American veterans for their willingness to serve and their sacrifice for the common good.
Joseph Nolan, a Vietnam War veteran and resident of Waterbury, Connecticut, believes that if this holiday is not recognized by local schools, its significance will be lost on future generations.
"I think people need to know what happened," he told NBC Connecticut. "We need to stop having a war every generation. And so I think the more we talk about, the more we discuss this, keeping this holiday a holiday in my mind is paramount."
Currently, some schools stay open on the day but honor veterans with special assemblies and parades, reported the Hartford Courant. In 2014, only about 75 of the 200 school districts in the state held classes on Veterans Day.
The committee has not yet made a decision.