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Hot Topic (12/14): Do you want your kids to attend school year-round?

Posted by on Dec. 14, 2009 at 2:51 AM
  • 48 Replies

 Board Reconsidering Summer Vacations
December 10, 2009

Guilford County Schools is debating whether or not to have year-round classes at some of its schools, a move almost guaranteed to enrage parents – ironically, at the same time that a new study ranks the school system poorly on satisfying parents with its administration, teachers and school safety.

Year-round school is an idea that has been kicking around in education circles for a while, and the Guilford County Board of Education is keen on it, despite its unpopularity with parents. As usually implemented, it doesn't create truly year-round classes – students get a month off in the summer and a week off in the spring and fall, plus the usual holiday breaks – but it does wipe out more than half of the traditional summer break.

The argument for year-round schooling goes something like this: Many other countries, including some with statistically more successful school systems, have year-round school. Year-round school gives more time for learning and is considered especially useful for high-poverty schools, where kids don't spend their summers taking trips, playing tennis or spending time in the great outdoors, and being in school is better than being surrounded by drugs and crime for three months. Year-round school helps with the problem, familiar to most of us from our school days, of information falling out of students' heads between the middle of June and the middle of August. The argument is that three-month summer breaks are a relic of a bygone agricultural society, and come on, it's time to get modern.

The argument against year-round schooling is simple: Most people hate it. Summer vacations are deeply ingrained in American culture. The idea of year-round school gets some play in low-income neighborhoods, but even there, many parents are against it. Middle-class parents are united in hating the idea, as they take trips during the summer and don't like the idea of a school administrator telling them not to. Parents want to have a say in the education of their children, and they want those children to have some time to run around, play and be children in the summer, rather than being forced by the government to sit and study all day, every day. The North Carolina General Assembly has outlawed school systems' sneaky way of edging the start of the school year earlier and earlier into August and the close of the school year later and later into June, although the legislators made an exception for year-round schools. And now we're supposed to be emulating Finland and Liechtenstein?

* * *

What do you think about year-round school?

Would you want your children to attend school "year-round"?

 





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by on Dec. 14, 2009 at 2:51 AM
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Replies (1-10):
smcclure2005
by Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 5:17 AM

No I do not like the idea. It will not work for my family. We spend the summers camping as a family and my kids are a part of this family. I would defiantly home school if they even started thinking that was going to happen to my kids.

mistynights234
by on Dec. 14, 2009 at 7:04 AM

 My oldest daughter  would of def. benefited from all year school.  My youngest is a different student and I think would do well either way.   I personally like the idea of all year school.  My friends kids go all year with a few weeks off every quarter.  I like that idea!


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nikki0522
by Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 7:10 AM

I am against it in public schools. That being said, we homeschool year round in our house, taking only the major holidays off but not the typical school vacations. We will take breaks as needed and last year we only did four day school weeks.

Wyldbutterfly
by Bronze Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 7:18 AM

Absolutely not! It is my opinion that kids need time to be just that, kids. As it stands now my children are on over load with all of the work they receive from school.

cheshirecat77
by New Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 9:51 AM

I think the problem with year round school is the burn out factor.  I'm a year round college student myself, so I understand what it would be like.  You need that break.  When I was a kid, me and all of my classmates looked forward to the summer.  I think that's important too.

I wouldn't want my DS attending school year round because of the above.

"Twas brilig and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe.  All mimsy were the morogroves and the momeraths outgrabe..."


~~~cheshirecat77~~~

MrsRStewart
by Bronze Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 9:59 AM

I think it would be a good idea to offer it as an option, espiecally for the children who are having problems.  However, I would not be in favor of going straight from not having one to the other because it would mess up so many plans for parents.  Maybe after a few years the change could happen.  

It would be good in Milwaukee Public Schools, though, since a study just came out that only 6% of eighth graders can do basic math!  Something needs to be done there.  Maybe fire almost every one and get new teachers.  I don't know.  Sorry if any of you work there.


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mymichelle2002
by Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 10:05 AM

Year around is NOT going to make it a better school and/or district. (Clark County) Vegas is in the top 10 largest and the top 3 worst. What WILL make it better is better pay for better and competent Teachers. That and lose the "No Child Left Behind Act".

grammie6
by Bronze Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 10:54 AM

I have always been a fan of this idea. We have a district in our area that has been practicing this for years, the only drawback has been the high schools cannot follow suit because of the athletic program.  If all districts in the area participated then there would be no issues with the athletic programs.

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shecallsmemom04
by on Dec. 14, 2009 at 10:57 AM

i agree, i'd also like to add more parental involvement to the red.  parents, first and foremost, are their children's teachers.  if it's lacking at home, nothing is going to help.  it starts with parents.  and i see a definite lack of parenting today.

Quoting mymichelle2002:

Year around is NOT going to make it a better school and/or district. (Clark County) Vegas is in the top 10 largest and the top 3 worst. What WILL make it better is better pay for better and competent Teachers. That and lose the "No Child Left Behind Act".


When my kids become wild and unruly, I use a nice, safe playpen. When they're finished, I climb out.
jenniamigo
by Member on Dec. 14, 2009 at 11:00 AM

I like the idea. I think my boys would definately benefit from it.  The article makes a good point about being compared to other countries that rank better than our school system. It will give more time for learning which i believe is what the students need.
 

Lets face it our education system is a joke.  The average person graduates highschool with an 8th grade reading level.  Even alot of students entering college no matter how high thier GPA was in highschool are struggling in college because our education system failed to provide what they needed.  And believe me I am no exception. I didn't have a 4.0 but i was an average student with a 3.5 and i have been back and forth to college three times and I wasn't even able to make it through the adult placement test. I had to take remedial math each time.

I remember all through out school especially highschool teachers would introduce a new lesson but stress how important it was to pay attention because we only have 3 weeks to learn it. Teachers and students need more time.  If you think about it another big difference is that in other developed countries that rank higher than us also begin learning English in grade school.  And by the time they graduate are fluent in 2 or more languages. And thats the norm around there. Around here it's not seen very often at all.  

I think what it boils down to with the opposition is selfishness. Because summer vacation is more important than education. Unless your swimming in money the average family vacation lasts a week. Which can be done with a month off during the summer. I mean technically summetime is easier. Theres no homework to stress with, depending on your job and age of children a large majority don't have to wake up in the butt crack of dawn and rush around the house to get ready. I get what we would be giving up but i think it's worth it. 

I have seen how some year round districts work and if i remember correctly they did a week off after each 9 weeks of school + holidays off. However they did it worked out to when added up it was equivalent to having the whole summer off just not at once that way they were less likely to forget what they learned. Where I live one school district is starting an hour earlier, getting out an hour later and eliminating 12th grade. Which is completely rediculous. Because they could get all their credits by the 11th grade doing it that way.  Anyway thats the way I see it lol 

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