Pros and Cons of Four Day School Week
Pro: Saving Money and Saving Jobs
* Shortening the school week can address budget deficits and save teachers who would have to be laid off otherwise. In the case of Peach County, Georgia, the district either needed to shorten the school week or cut 39 teachers from the workforce in the 2009 to 2010 school year, according to Fox News. Shaving a day from the school week saves money without sacrificing teaching talent. This approach makes sense if a district faces short-term budgetary difficulties and knows that teachers are needed long-term to support the system. Con: Difficulty Finding Childcare
* Cutting the week to four days places additional pressure on working parents, who need to arrange childcare for younger children on their days off. Daycare is expensive, and often focuses more on keeping children safe and entertained rather than teaching them. A few districts try to alleviate these problems by providing support for families who can't find or afford care. Some district-sponsored programs even offer tutoring services. Pro: Encouraging Responsibility and Independence
* Having a day off from classes doesn't necessarily mean getting a day off from schoolwork. Schools can modify their curricula to assign more individual, take-home projects that students complete on their days off. Giving students more independent work encourages the development of research skills, problem-solving skills and time management abilities. Having the extra day also gives students more time to study on their own, allowing them to learn at their own pace and use a method of their choice to absorb new information. Con: Not Enough Face Time
* While some children work well on their own, others suffer from less classroom instruction and teacher assistance. Marlow, Oklahoma's school district superintendent said that the school would move back to five-day weeks after the school tried a four-day schedule to save on operating costs....
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