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Old 08-22-2011, 05:28 PM
 
309 posts, read 358,815 times
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In addition to the new circuit busing we all loathe (it costs $1 a ride (it will cost me $1080 this year for the 3 girls) and requires a 1.5 mile trip to the bus stop for my oldest child) it appears from the email I just got that the school district is seriously considering going to a 4 day school week next year. After all, they assure us, "77% of Falcon school zone employees are in favour of the concept of moving to a a 4 day school week"! The kids would go to school 50 minutes more a day (meaning the high school would be 7:30 am to 3:30 pm, middle school 7:50 am to 3:40 pm and elementary 8:20 am to 4:10 pm) either Tuesday through Friday or Monday through Thursday. Poor kids - that's a looooong day! Given the extra time it is taking to get to and from the bus stops that makes for a 9+ hour day. Add homework, chores, and dinner and there's no time for anything else.

No reason is given for the change in the email, though the email assures us that if they adopt this plan "it would staff more time to meet for Professional Development and Collaboration" and "it would save the district and the parents a lot of gas money over the course of the school year." And all the working parents needn't worry; the elementary and middle schools would offer child care for students on their day off. (Of course, you'd have to take the kids there and pick them up since there won't be school bus service that day AND pay for that extra day as well, which isn't mentioned.) I can't see this helping students' academic achievement at all.

As usual, this is the first the parents have heard about any of this (and they are voting on it October 11!). I feel so sorry for people who are trying to sell houses out in this area. Since the whole bus fiasco earlier this year (when the only way the parents even found out the school district was voting that night on doing away with the district's transportation dept entirely was a note sent home by the bus drivers; it went downhill from there), house sales have come to a virtual standstill and lots of families who rent (like us) are leaving the district.

I'm betting they make the change because they want it and it will save a little bit of money, regardless of how parents feel about it.
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Old 08-22-2011, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Prescott Valley,az summer/east valley Az winter
2,034 posts, read 3,530,393 times
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my sister was teaching school in Oregon when they went to a 4 day school week. All reports say pupil test results rose parent and child satisfaction rose. Don't paint it all bad just yet~ 4 day schooling works
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Old 08-22-2011, 06:51 PM
 
71 posts, read 160,943 times
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I watched a program on tv that studied a four day week for kids and as deckdoc said, the test scores rose. The kids were more rested and were more alert in class, (hence the higher test scores). The kids really liked it. This particular school did this as an experiment, not for funding reasons. Personally, I like the idea and so would my teenage daughter.
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Old 08-22-2011, 07:14 PM
 
Location: Staten Island, NY
7,903 posts, read 6,477,538 times
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How does this affect families where both parents work? This would be a disaster for my family. Added expenses for no good reason.
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Old 08-22-2011, 07:22 PM
SYS
 
336 posts, read 993,738 times
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The 4-day school week could work really well for kids with highly involved parents. For those parents who are not as involved in their kid's education, and those who like to outsource their kid's upbringing to the school teachers, AND/OR to those parents who are both working full-time, especially with kids who can't stay home-alone, the idea of 4-day school week would pose a problem.

I've always maintained that my kids are "home-schooled" even though they attend the school full-time, i.e., the real education takes place at home more than at school. So, for me personally, I'd welcome the idea of the 4-day school week. It'd give me the badly needed extra time for quality education as well as extracurricular developments like music, sports and community service.
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:19 PM
 
841 posts, read 1,249,364 times
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Just wanted to state that this is with the Falcon Zone in District 49. I haven't heard my zone (Sand Creek) or the Vista Ridge Zone talking about that issue.

Further clarification: District 49 divided itself into three zones, which are headed by the three high schools in the area.

I honestly have heard good things about four day weeks as well. However, I feel it hurts the hourly workers, and parents for youngsters in the district. I know I would have difficulty switching to a four hour day if District 11 (where my daughter/where I live) did that, and I worked a five day week.


I do not believe the housing is at a standstill primarily (as you implied) because of the district problems. The economy sucks. I am currently trying to find a new place to live (we sold our house!!) and I won't live in Falcon- not because of the district, but because I don't want to live in West Kansas.

I hope, when you move to District 20, as you've stated multiple times, you like that district much more than 49. I typically hear nothing but positive things from people who go to the school I teach at- both with involved parents and students. I'm sorry you have had such a negative experience with District 49.
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:37 PM
 
71 posts, read 160,943 times
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I thought of the problem with working parents after I posted. I'm a stay at home mom, so I was only thinking about my own situation. I would imagine parents who are off on the weekends would need to put their children in daycare on Friday's if the child was not old enough to stay home alone. With so many parents struggling, it could be a real burden.
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Old 08-23-2011, 07:12 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
583 posts, read 1,300,771 times
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This is a big trend and it's working for many districts. Big $$$ savings as well. I say don't knock it until you try it.
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Old 08-23-2011, 07:14 AM
 
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
583 posts, read 1,300,771 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Airborneguy View Post
How does this affect families where both parents work? This would be a disaster for my family. Added expenses for no good reason.

Schools are not day care providers.

There are also parents that work weekends...should we have school on weekends as well so they are cared for and fed?
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Old 08-23-2011, 07:47 AM
 
71 posts, read 160,943 times
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I completely agree Bullitt007. I feel fortunate to have never put my child in daycare, (she's in high school now), but realize this is not the case with many families. Still, it is not the responsibility of the public school system to solve that problem.
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