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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

Year-round school doesn't help kids learn

Year-round school calendars "do little to raise achievement and pose a host of logistical problems that are hard for schools and parents to solve," write researchers Paul T. von Hippel and Jennifer Graves in Education Next. "To school leaders who hope that changing calendars can undo pandemic learning loss, we offer this advice: Don’t do it."


One reason year-round students don't learn more is that they don't get more learning time, Von Hippel and Graves write. Typically, year-round schools offer a "balanced" calendar providing the same 175 to 180 days of instruction. Students gets less time off during the summer and longer breaks during the year.


"Extended-year" models, which may teach for 200 days, are very rare in the U.S.


Potentially, single-track schools can use the longer breaks as “intersessions” for catch-up work or enrichment. However, this runs into the same problem as summer school, Van Hippel and Graves write. It's hard to fund and staff and even harder to get students to show up.

Flint, Michigan schools adopted a year-round calendar with four weeks of intersession instruction in 2018. "Three years later, the superintendent lamented that not enough struggling students were attending the intersessions," and called for returning to a traditional calendar.

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Ospite
30 ott 2022

In most Asian countries, the school year is about 200-220 days, compared to the 180 days in the US (developed when the US was more agriculture based than today)...As a result, most Asian students wind up with 13 years of schooling vs 12 in the US, and it's not a surprise

why the US is getting it butt kicked in PISA and TIMSS testing


The crowd who opposes testing is suffering from rectal-cranial inversion as grade inflation in the US is now playing the blame game for the disaster from the latest NAEP and ACT results where the grades given don't match up with actual knowledge...


<sigh>

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Ospite
29 ott 2022

Most homeschoolers that I know, including my family, follow something similar to a traditional school calendar. Summers are for being bored until you get creative, visiting family, having slumber parties, going to the pool, going to camp or sports training, or doing the 'fun education' stuff like trips and museums and zoos. Those that have them also do a lot of work in their gardens.


A lot of the high school age kids choose to do one class over the summer to lighten their school year road. Many take 8 real credits - no study hall - and are involved in a lot of extracurriculars or have jobs, so it can help to get something out of the way. F…

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Steve Sherman
Steve Sherman
28 ott 2022

I always thought the teachers union liked the nice long summer break

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Ospite
28 ott 2022

Speaking as a former homeschooler, we do "year round" instruction regardless.


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Ospite
28 ott 2022

The article makes it pretty clear that Extended-year schooling is a scam, like so much else about the public school system. They provide about the same number of days of instruction, they just spread them around differently.


The system is broken. Only a massive intervention with a full reboot can possibly save it now. More likely, I think, is a gradual erosion as more states allow parents to use their public-school money for private tuition and the majority of students leave. It would be sad to see the private school system deteriorate to nothing, but it's an entirely self-inflicted wound.

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