[Editorial] Schools should move to 4-day instructional weeks


Bruce Matsunaga | research.com

Kaitlyn Johnson, Reporter

Many schools around the United States have been advocating or switching to a 4-day school week, which could benefit the students as much as it does staff. For countless staff and students, school can be dreadful given its length, time, and atmosphere, so to add a bit of aid to the situation, numerous ISD’s have adopted 4-day school weeks.
Given its advantages, the stance held is that the 4-day school week should be an opportunity for every school to experience.

As schools debate whether or not to conform to the new school week, as many as 560 districts became all for the change. A prime example is Crosby ISD in Crosby, Texas. Crosby has become the biggest school to participate in the shortening of the week and inspired many other districts to do so. In most cases, staff members are for the change and are rarely against it because of its effects on themselves and the students. Those effects include a rise in student performance, reduction in referrals, etc.

Other than academics, sports are valued by staff, students, and parents during the school year. However, these schedules become hard to balance with work, school, and extracurriculars in the way. With this schedule, students can access the easiest way to make it to sports and balance homework because an extra day is provided each week.
In addition, schools will see potential reductions in the financial costs of running a school district such as electricity and gas for transportation. Schools are dependent on government funding, which cuts out things needed for students to excel within schools, and many teachers will pay out of pocket to fund such things that can better help students understand, learn, and grasp hard curriculum. Shortening the school week would put more money in the school district’s bank account, which in turn the leaders could pass along to students and teachers.

Though the shortened school week can help students and staff, it can also hurt parents. At least 68% of parents work a Monday through Friday job, making it hard to adapt to the new school week given that they may not be able to be home to supervise their children on that day school is closed. With this dilemma a babysitter, trusted adult, or neighbor would be the best and safest solution. After-school programs also offer certain time frames that can be compatible with parents’ schedules and offer some flexibility. These programs could perhaps offer free child care on that day that school is closed each week for those parents that don’t have any support at home.

In conclusion, parents, students and staff reap the benefits of this new 4-day school week. Staff have been compassionate and accepting of the change because of the accommodations working around their busy schedules. Schools should offer this given how many advantages it has for everyone.