The four-day school week isn’t a new idea – it’s been rolled out across the country for decades by desperate school boards, urticaria so there’s plenty to read about its impacts. See a comprehensive roundup of links below.
What to consider about schedule changes
excerpted from: https://bctf.ca/parents.aspx?id=3606
- Will your elementary school child have to go and come from school in the dark for the winter months?
- Will additional time each day add to the stress and tiredness of your child?
- How long in a day should a young child be expected to concentrate and learn?
- How will you schedule children on different schedules at different schools?
- If you work away from home how will your children’s schedule affect your schedule?
Child care needs
- Will an extended winter and spring break mean you must pay more for child care?
- If you rely on an older sibling to care for younger siblings and the older child is no longer available how will you accommodate the younger child’s needs?
- Will your child be able to cope with a shortened lunch break and perhaps no recess and not become overtired?
- Will your child require extra food for the longer day? In some schools on the four-day week programs, costs were saved due to no food being served on the fifth day. Can you afford the extra costs of now providing for the fifth day?
- Will there be an increased risk of bullying and violence with an extended day and fewer supervisors?
- Will the district ensure there is adequate lighting provided on sites where schools are open later?
- Will students have to travel on dark streets?
- If students leave later do they have to travel in periods of peak traffic due to rush hour?
- Many students enjoy community and extra-curricular school activities. If the day is extended by an hour or more will they be too tired to take part in such events? Will inter-district and intra-mural sports programs be affected?
Family lifestyle needs
- How will it affect your family if you are no longer able to have common meal times?
- If all of your children are not on a common holiday schedule how will family outings and vacations be scheduled?
- Will an extended day adversely affect the employment possibilities for your older children?
- Will families new to the community be able to adjust to this new calendar without hardship?
Children with special learning needs
- If there are fewer support staff available what will it mean to your child?
- How will a longer day affect your child’s ability to learn?
- How will school facilities used by community groups be affected?
- Will the changed use of facilities affect community groups and programs either because of the changed facility availability or because of the changed attendance patterns of students and staff?
- If schools are closed on Fridays what will the effect be on the community and businesses in vandalism, loitering, policing?
Lots to Read:
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The hinterland is hurting (Kitimat, 2009)
B.C. district rebels against four-day school week (Coast Mountains, 2007)
SD73 – Suggested Changes to School Calendar Model (Kamloops/Thompson, 2003)
A Review of the Evidence on the Four?Day School Week (Maine, 2009)