Longer school days

@speakeasy (4215)
United States
March 26, 2007 2:25pm CST
With a lot of the schools failing in the "No Child Left Behind" program; many schools are thinking about extending the school day 30 min - 2 hours longer each day. Some schools are even considering adding up to 10 additional days to the school year. The cities and states say this will cost billions of dollars extra in salaries and utilities each year. But, if the students don't start passing the tests, the schools stand to lose millions of dollars in federal funding. Personally, I don't think keeping the kids in class longer will really help that much. I think they need to look at other ways to teach the kids instead. What do you think?
2 people like this
4 responses
• United States
27 Mar 07
It has been a long time, but I have been a substitute teacher and when I was in college I got involved in a controversy concerning alledged inferior teaching in one of the departments at our university. So, I have looked at what causes some teaching to be not up to standard. The problem is not the students not spending enough time in the classroom. The problem is the teachers spending too much time in the classroom not really teaching. I totally agree having the students spend this extra time in the classroom is not going to improve their performance. Especially, if that time in the classroom is with the same teachers who already are not doing their jobs. What's the answer? School districts that do really well mostly have figured out how to increase supervision of their teachers without infringing on academic freedom. In other words, those districts that are not intimidated by the teacher's union do better.
@speakeasy (4215)
• United States
27 Mar 07
Unions have their purposes; but, letting a union dictate HOW a subject is taught makes no sense. Unions were originally established to ensure fair wages and safe working conditions. When they step outside those boundrys; problems occur in any occupation. When it is an area as essential to the country's future as educating our young; they should BUTT OUT as long as it butting out does not make it unsafe for the teachers to teach.
1 person likes this
• United States
27 Mar 07
I too have mixed emotions about unions. As an independent trucker, I very much saw the need for unions as I got treated unfairly quite often without recourse available. I also met a lot of teamsters and they told me about how their union simply was not the solution to all their problems and that in fact, sometimes the union was the problem. The teacher's union has become in some ways like that teamster's union. Sometimes, it too is the problem. How mixed are my emotions concerning unions? My wife is a shop steward in a union that shall remain nameless.
• United States
27 Mar 07
BTW, I almost forgot, thanks for the best response. I have been speaking my mind here and as you can see, it is not always appreciated. Thanks, again.
• United States
20 Apr 07
I think children are already over-scheduled. They go to school all day, come home and do homework, eat dinner, shower or bathe, do chores if required, and maybe have a little time to do something they enjoy before heading off to bed. I don't think longer school days will help anyway. They are already teaching these kids to the tests required by No Child Left Behind. They have the kids cram for a few weeks and then take the test, offering prizes and such. In my opinion, if they taught what was necessary academically throughout the year (instead of spending so much time on social issues that are better left to families), the kids might learn what they need to know to pass standardized tests. My two cents...
@speakeasy (4215)
• United States
21 Apr 07
Thank you for your two cents. I agree with the basic principals behind the "no child left behind" program; but, I don't think they are are going about it the right way. My son has learning disabilities that make learning more difficult for him than the average student; but, he is very smart in certain areas. Instead of going for standardized tests, there are certain basic skills that every one needs. Once those skills have been achieved; they should concentrate on helping kids maximize the areas they are the best at; so the kids can reach THEIR maximum potential. Right now they are trying to make, square and rectangular pegs fit into round holes and it is not working.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Apr 07
Yes. Children are each unique with their own strengths, weaknesses, interests, and talents. I wish the teaching was more personally focused. I don't like standardized testing. I think it attempts to fit everyone into the same little box. At the same time, I do think teachers schools have to be held accountable. I believe NCLB was created with good intentions, but like most bureaucratic efforts, it doesn't work as intended.
@mzbubblie (3840)
• United States
27 Mar 07
I agree, I don't think the schools should be extended longer or even extend the school year. I believe with the correct and proper teaching in these schools and the parents, other family members, even friends playing a major role in their lives as to helping them throughtout their school years. This would not be a issue.
@speakeasy (4215)
• United States
27 Mar 07
But, obviously something is not working. This is not a problem in just ONE school, area, or even state. This problem is nationwide. Any recommendations?
@sarah22 (3981)
• United States
26 Mar 07
i find it not right to do that,children especially the younger ones should not be there for that period of time.
@speakeasy (4215)
• United States
26 Mar 07
I agree, especially, if they are still going to be assigning homework. Children need some time to be children.