Year-round school will get students on the right track
As a volunteer in the elementary school system and after doing some research, I have determined that our children only get about seven months of teaching out of the nine that they attend. Upon looking at a local school calendar, I found that the children have a total of 24 full days off from school and eight days of early dismissal. This does not account for snow days and/or illness.
To that number I am adding the first month of school in September that is used to see where the children are by testing to see who may need special help and what they actually remember from their last year of school. Their last month of school has a lot of year-end concerts, field trips, etc. Children are already in their pass/fail place by June. So this brings the school year of teaching to about six months. I also haven’t mentioned the extra time that is used to get the children ready for the ELA testing that happens in March of the year. A lot of time is given to these tests.
The solution is not longer days of school. Children are exhausted by the end of the day and just want to go home, get a snack and relax. So the obvious solution is to have children go to school year-round. I can hear the screams from here now.
First of all, the September to June schedule was set up when farmers needed to have the extra help on their farms for planting and harvesting. That included their children. This is not the case anymore. When I went to college it was year-round and I loved it. It helped me to stay focused and the continuity wasn’t lost with a whole summer lost.
This system is used in some states in our country already. There still would be time off between semesters and holidays. The bonus would be that the learning is still going on in July and August, which brings us back to September, which will allow the teachers to teach the current curriculum instead of rehashing last year’s curriculum.