The idea of year round school is not new but was introduced many years back around 1900. Although the name “year round school” sounds as if children attend school all 365 days of a year, the fact is that schools operate 180 days a year which is stretched out over the entire year with short breaks between each term.
Fact 1 The Beginning Of Year Round School
This system of education where children attended school 180 days in a year but divided by short breaks in between began as yearly as the 1900s. It was first started in the urban areas and the towns that implemented this system were Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Washington D.C., Detroit and Buffalo. It was a 45-15 plan where children went to school for 45 days and enjoyed a break for 15 days.
Fact 2 Students’ Performance
There are many controversies regarding the advantages and disadvantages of year round schooling system. It has been found that students who attended YRS did well or slightly better than those who attended traditional schools which had long summer vacations. But the greatest benefits were enjoyed by students who come from a low-income family or have other problems that influence their academic performances. Weaker students of YRS performed better because short breaks gave them the opportunity to seek more help and use them for tutoring and remedial courses to do better.
Fact 3 Opinions of Teachers
According to teachers of YRS, smarter students could utilize the short breaks to enroll in different courses during their vacation and graduate faster. Moreover, size of the classes is reduced that creates better learning environment. If a student is weak and cannot fair well in one term, he/she can repeat that particular session but does not have to waste an entire academic year. Teachers can also increase their income by working during breaks and have flexible contracts.
Fact 4 Others Who Favor Year Round School
There are quite a few benefits of the Year Round School system.
- Businesses find it easier to provide jobs for qualified students on a year-round basis and not only during the summer vacations.
- Since students graduate at different times in YRS, there is a decrease in unemployment as compared to a large number of qualified graduates searching for jobs all at the same time.
- It allows parents to arrange for daycare as well as vacations and it also saves a lot of money. If all students and parents plan to spend their holidays in some tourists’ destination, there is naturally a rush for tickets and hotel bookings which increases expenses.
- The Year Round School system is convenient for offices too. They will not have too many people taking leave all at the same time namely the summer vacations.
Fact 5 The Reasons Of Opposition
There are however a section of people who are not in favor of Year Round School.
- This opposition mostly comes from an agricultural background. Although the kids attend school, they need to help their parents in the fields and farms especially during summer for which it becomes difficult for them to attend school during the summer months.
- Maintenance and operating costs are prone to increase if schools are run the entire year. These costs affect the budget and costs of extracurricular activities like sports, arts etc that are state funded.
- Children who need to fund their college education often seek summer jobs which become difficult if schools remain open during summer. Such students need a long vacation to attend a summer job and save for their education.
- Some people feel that attending school for the entire year may create negative attitude about learning and will not do well in their examinations.