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Four Day School Weeks: A Game-Changer or a Potential Challenge for Students?

Some schools in Iowa are implementing a four day week schedule, so what are the pros and cons of these new changes?
Four Day School Weeks: A Game-Changer or a Potential Challenge for Students?

Within the past decade, multiple schools in Iowa have switched to an interesting schedule for students and teachers, four-day weeks. 

The elimination of the fifth day of the week has been an increasingly popular change across the state that students have enjoyed, but the reason for the change isn’t as cut and dry as many think.

At first glance, a four-day week sounds amazing from a student perspective, but this just isn’t a feasible change for many school districts. Many districts are trying to find the pros and cons of the schedule. 

In an article from The Journalists Resource the benefits and consequences are discussed, showing the unseen obstacles of this schedule. 

Benefits may include a decline in fighting between students, and also the chance for districts to save money which in turn could be given back to teachers. One detrimental consequence was the strike that was taken on instructional time.

A neighboring district, Columbus Junction, is proposing four-day weeks to its staff and students. An article written by The Muscatine Journal shared that the district is proposing it to reduce student absences, give teachers more planning time, and allow students more time for extracurriculars.

The first school in Iowa to implement this schedule was the Waco Community School District back in 2013. Since then multiple schools have implemented the new way of scheduling, but changes also bring challenges.

“I think it would be great in the meantime, but I think the summers would be way shorter and the school days would be longer,” shared Micayla Edkin, a sophomore at MHS.

Sanibel Duncan, MHS sophomore, shared that she would enjoy it because that would mean that she had more days off school during the year.

As great as a three-day weekend each week sounds, one challenge that comes up is the instructional time that is lost eliminating a day. 

In Iowa, schools are required to be in session for at least 180 days out of the year and this translates to 1,080 hours a year. This is where the problem of eliminating a day arises. 

Getting rid of the fifth day of school a week makes it that much harder to meet the minimum requirement of hours from the state.

However you choose to see it, there are both benefits and disadvantages to having four-day weeks. Currently, there is no talk within the Muscatine School District to implement a four-day week schedule.

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About the Contributor
Hadley Hines, Writer
Hadley is a first-year member of The Auroran Today and is very excited for the year. In her free time, you will catch her dancing as a varsity member of the MHS Dance Team, and as a competitive dancer at River City All-Stars!
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