In On the Clock, Education Sector’s Elena Silva analyzes the push to increase the school day and year, finding that “improving the quality of instructional time is at least as important as increasing the quantity of time in school.” Not surprisingly, increasing “high-quality teaching time” is a significant help to “low-income students and others who have little opportunity for learning outside of school.”
Schools that succeed with disadvantaged students typically have a longer school day and often a longer year so kids who start behind have more time to catch up. But an unsuccessful school doesn’t get good by boring kids for another hour.
Lengthening the school day is under consideration in a number of cities and states. It’s the small schools of 2007.