Thousands of Students Head Back to School in Va. | NBC4 Washington

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Thousands of Students Head Back to School in Va.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    While other students across the region have been hitting the books for a week or more, kids throughout much of northern Virginia are trudging off to their first day of school. (Published Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2016)

    While other students across the region have been hitting the books for a week or more, kids throughout much of northern Virginia are trudging off to their first day of school. 

    Tuesday marks the start of the school year for students in Arlington and Fairfax counties and Alexandria. 

    The post-Labor Day start has been something of a tradition in Virginia, where the so-called King's Dominion law requires school to begin after Labor Day. School systems can receive waivers, though, and Loudoun and Prince William County schools have already started. 

    Next year, Fairfax County plans to join those jurisdictions starting the school year before Labor Day. 

    Maryland, meanwhile, is going in the opposite direction: Gov. Larry Hogan signed an executive order last week requiring school there to start after Labor Day.

    Tuesday also marks a big change for commuters. 

    All throughout the month of September, commuters will likely spend more and more time during the morning and evening rush. It's a phenomenon that local traffic experts are calling the "September Shock." 

    SafetTrack, Metro's nine-month maintenance plan, may also add to the number of commuters on the road. 

    Transportation experts say depending on where you are coming from, you could spend an extra hour behind the wheel.