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U.S. Schools Looking At Extending Hours

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posted on Feb, 24 2007 @ 03:52 PM
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Harris runs Fletcher-Maynard Academy, a combined public elementary and middle school in Cambridge, Mass., that is experimenting with an extended, eight-hour school day.
The school, which serves mostly poor, minority students, is one of 10 in the state experimenting with a longer day as part of a $6.5 million program.

While Massachusetts is leading in putting in place the longer-day model, lawmakers in Minnesota, New Mexico, New York and Washington, D.C., also have debated whether to lengthen the school day or year.
In addition, individual districts such as Miami-Dade in Florida are experimenting with added hours in some schools.

On average, U.S. students go to school 6.5 hours a day, 180 days a year, fewer than in many other industrialized countries, according to a report by the Education Sector, a Washington-based think tank.


The extended-day schedule costs on average about $1,200 extra per student, program spokesman Stephen Mancini said.
Massachusetts is spending about $1,300 per student extra on its extended-day effort.
Most of the extra cost goes into added pay for teachers. At Fletcher-Maynard, senior teachers can make up to $20,000 more per year for the extended hours, Harris said.
Not all of the school's teachers have opted to work longer hours.

Schools that are experimenting with longer days are adding more down time and enrichment courses, as well as reading and math.

At Edwards Middle School, an extended-day school in Boston, students are staging musicals, designing book covers for favorite novels and coming up with new cheers to boost school spirit


SOURCE:
news.Yahoo.com

Emphasis mine.

I think this is a good thing.
As it is, we are one of the industrial nations that sends kids to school
the least amount odf time.

I'm sure there will be some resistance from the older High School
level kids, but overall I think this will be liked by many people.


Comments, Opinions?

[edit on 2/24/2007 by iori_komei]




posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 08:18 AM
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Honestly, I don't think it is necessary.

If we would stop spoon feeding the children every lick of the material, or progressing through the material at a slow drip, they would not need to extend the day in order to finish the required material. Homework, I mean C'mon. I've read different members on here proclaim that they spend two or three hours every day on homework. Honestly, that is a big load of crap. If you spend more than forty-five minutes, every night, on homework, you are doing a lot more than anyone else. Sure sometimes it may be necessary to spend an hour or two extra on something that is due, but that is completely normal. We are talking about day to day work that is expected every single day.

I think that students should be compelled to do more legwork at home. That could almost translate into a shorter day, something I would disagree with.

Extending the day is going to put more teachers, educators, cleaners, etc., forced to work longer hours. A lot of them are unhappy as it is, so what are these extended hours going to translate into? Pissed off employers which will translate into their teaching.

Completely unnecessary, in my opinion.

Work at a quicker pace and stop spoon feeding them the material. They don't want you to know that they are more than capable of doing the work on their own, but it is apparent that the standard student is more than able.

Having students do more of the work on their own will teach them a more important lesson than anything these teachers are trying to put on them.

Independence and responsibility for one's own is a viable contribution on behalf of the education system.



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 12:53 PM
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This is an attempt to remove all non-school influences from children's lives. So long as schools are government-controlled, this is utterly authoritarian. The end result is to remove any adult influence other than employees of the school.



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 01:08 PM
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This is ridiculous. Kids need to have time to play and relax. Play is an important learning tool for kids, as well as socialization. The problem with education is not that we need longer hours, it's that we need to make those hours count. Kids can do down time on their own and we already teach math and reading as it is and it should be enough for any kid. Now if we were to teach kids things like criticial thinking and analysis or a mandatory second language, like the rest of the world does, then it might be worthwhile. Or we could start teaching geography again and some other social sciences, also things like music that enrich one's life and soul, now that would be worthwhile.

Chissler, most of the kids I know have anywhere from 2 to 3 hours of homework every single night, at least in California schools. The kids go to school, do homework, watch maybe an hour of TV and then go to bed. When do they get time to be kids?
Maybe it's different in Canada, but here the kids are swamped with homework. I've heard this from alot of parents, too.



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 01:13 PM
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Well, to "fix" schools, they need to do exactly the opposite, I believe. Not by shortening hours, but by changing their strategy.

Every child is different. Some are not smart, some don't want to be smart, some are good at math, some are good at English, while others are good at foreign language.

So what's the problem? The schools assume that everyone can be great at everything, or equally great. What needs to be done is allow for more specialization, I think. Let those who want to pursue a career in engineering take math and science, and progress more quickly, while those who want to be writers or journalists could focus on language.



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 01:16 PM
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I also noticed from the original article that this was to be implemented into mostly low income family schools - more proof that public school is merely a babysitting tool for the hive workers and wage slaves.

I worked as a high school teacher in South Korea for one year. There the students are at school from 7.30 am to 6.pm. Then when they get to leave school, most are in extra classes at private institutes or at home studying until at least midnight. If you don't want your children to attend the 'after school classes' parents must come in and provide a very good reason. I have never seen so many grey haired teenagers in all my life. This is not the way to create balanced citizens.



[edit on 25-2-2007 by deessell]

[edit on 25-2-2007 by deessell]



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 01:26 PM
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I agree completely, deessell. There's learning, there's education, and then there's torture.



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 05:28 PM
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Well, as I originally emphasized, America is one of the Industrial nations
with the shortest amount of time in school.

As it is, most Middle-Schools and High-Schools go from 7:30am-2pm.
Extending that by an hour or two is'nt going to cause a great deal of
harm.


The real problem with students in America today, is that a vast majority
of them simply wont do the work, even if they fail, and skip class.

This may be because they are stuck with boring classes all day, by
extending the school day the schools could add some interesting fun
classes throughout the day for them.

I've been in a class with some kids one semester who just did'nt do
anything and skipped about 10% of the time because the entire semes-
ter thay had hard boring classes, however the next semester, two of
them from the previous semester had an art class and a computer
class, and they started doing better, and doing there work and did'nt
skip as much.

Basically I am all for this idea because I see kids needing to take the
hard boring classes, like math, science (well not boring to me), history
and such, but by having only those classes, they have no relaxation or
fun time during the day.


Oh, and as I said, I've not only seen the phenomenon I described
above, but I've also experienced it.



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 07:00 PM
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Originally posted by iori_komei
Well, as I originally emphasized, America is one of the Industrial nations
with the shortest amount of time in school.


You assume that this is a negative


Originally posted by iori_komei
As it is, most Middle-Schools and High-Schools go from 7:30am-2pm.
Extending that by an hour or two is'nt going to cause a great deal of
harm.


An extra hour or two would have a huge effect on many aspects of the system. From bus drivers to janitors, teachers to principals, they would all go through a big change here. I think you under estimate the actual effect of one or two hours.


Originally posted by iori_komei
The real problem with students in America today, is that a vast majority
of them simply wont do the work, even if they fail, and skip class.


So to resolve this issue, we are going to extend the work day? Seems like we are creating more of a problem than resolving an existing issue.


Originally posted by iori_komei
This may be because they are stuck with boring classes all day, by
extending the school day the schools could add some interesting fun
classes throughout the day for them.


No, it would extend the pre-existing "boring" day. Extending the existing day is not the answer. Revamping the existing day is where the solution lies. The average person can only remain focused for an average of seven minutes. Taking in account we are dealing with young person's who are dealing with physical changes to their body, it is a little much to ask them to deal with lecture after lecture. Some kids need a hands on approach to truly grasp the concept. We do not need to insert an extra hour or two in the day to manage this.


Originally posted by iori_komei
I've been in a class with some kids one semester who just did'nt do
anything and skipped about 10% of the time because the entire semes-
ter thay had hard boring classes, however the next semester, two of
them from the previous semester had an art class and a computer
class, and they started doing better, and doing there work and did'nt
skip as much.


So how would adding an extra hour on each day change anything? You reinforce the premise that we need to revamp the standard day, rather than add to the duration. It is all in the approach that the educator takes.


Originally posted by iori_komei
Basically I am all for this idea because I see kids needing to take the
hard boring classes, like math, science (well not boring to me), history
and such, but by having only those classes, they have no relaxation or
fun time during the day.
Oh, and as I said, I've not only seen the phenomenon I described
above, but I've also experienced it.


How is adding an extra hour to the class transforming it from "boring" to "fun"? I'm not even in high school, but the thought of an extra hour to anything is anything but fun. Now getting out an hour early would be "fun".

Teachers need to understand that it is tough to remain focused. Sometimes we forget that and show no empathy towards the student. Use visual aids, look for feed back, try to understand why others are not participating, and show that you genuinely care what each student thinks. Most don't care because they feel nobody cares about them.

This "tough" look that some try to put on is merely a cover for the insecurity that exists within. Teachers need to overcome this hurdle.

[edit on 25-2-2007 by chissler]



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 07:04 PM
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I have a suggestion: instead of longer hours why not have smaller classes. Then I think that students would learn more. The classes could be more communicative than text based.

In all fairness I really don't remember much from High School - I have to do a lot of catching up now. Anyways, a lot of the things that you learn at school are lies.

[edit on 25-2-2007 by deessell]



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 07:38 PM
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Did you even READ my post, iori? Making the day longer is going to increase taxes and make the problem worse.

You can't force people to learn. It's a cultural problem, not an administrative one. If children dislike school so much, then there is a misalignment between the students' culture and the school they are FORCED to attend.

Now, go back and read my post, and apply this to it.



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 07:59 PM
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There's a group of high school German foreign exchange students in my town that tells me that they are surprised at how long their American school day is, and how it's crammed with too many subjects. Their day back home ends at !:00, allowing teachers time to plan, meet with colleagues and help students.

They do not study so many subjects in one day.

Plus, schools do not supply the extensive social/sports programs we have here, as there are city/private teams/groups.

They also cannot believe that American schools try to educate everyone the same, regardless of ability! For example, there are periodic tests beginning after about US 5th grade to see what path students should be on. Schools teach to students' ability, needs and wants.

American schools have become a de facto babysitting/sports/social institution.

And let's remember a possible conspiracy as to why US schools/teachers are singled out for work hours: the European summer vacation and holidays are offered to workers who are not teachers. God forbid, the American worker take a day off without being made to feel guilty or without pay. Face it, the American worker has been getting the shaft. Time to spend with family, an honest to goodness Family Value--hah!



posted on Feb, 25 2007 @ 11:24 PM
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The theory is that students refuse to work in school due to outside influences. The longer school day is an attempt to remove all potential influences outside of school. Like a cult, if the school system has full control of children's lives, schools can engage in whatever brainwashing program they wish.

I heard the leaders of KIPP speak, and they explained how they do this successfully. Their focus is on the inner city. Somewhat like missionaries of yore, they have a full immersion program into the culture they create through their school. With a long school day, the students have no respite from the school program. The school can then follow the state program to create the 'perfect' wage-laborers without hindrance from ethnicity, culture, family, or other influence.



posted on Feb, 26 2007 @ 03:58 PM
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This is awful. I am in high school at the moment and extending the day is definitely not the answer. It would be hell for the kids, just more boring/ stress/ whatever else through out the day. The schools need a thorough change about how teaching is taught, not an extra hour.



posted on Mar, 1 2007 @ 08:51 PM
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Schools increase hours because the longer a school is in session the more funding from the state it can recieve.

There may be other, more secret, reasons as well....



posted on Mar, 1 2007 @ 09:09 PM
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Its not at all the time that matters its what being done with the time. IM in highschool and the problem is that one classes are boring so kids dont want to pay attention, two many of the teachers dont have enough knowledge, and third and i think most important of all, is that schools are teaching just about all the material WRONG. Not that teachers are lying, but its put forth in a way that it doesnt make sense to most of the kids and doesnt at all seem relevant. I think we'd be better off with less testing and much more class dissucussion to get kids interested and show though them how what we're learning, wether it be math, science, social studies what ever is related to their world. Teach kids to THINK not to suck up information then regurgitate on command.



posted on Mar, 2 2007 @ 09:03 PM
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HeLL, LETS JUST DO SCHOOL THE WHOLE DAM DAY .

SMARTER BY THE MINUTE MAN.
EVERY HOUR I SPEND I JUST GET SMARTER AND SMARTER.
could spend the night in little card board cages with all the books packed inside of them with alittle dirty towel to keep us warm when they turn the heat down.


here we go agien with this stupid idea of quantity is better then quality.

what a smart way to think of things.

SCHOOL DOES NOT SOLVE ALL THE PROBLEMS PEOPLE, IF ANY.
GET THAT THROUGH YOUR LITTLE PIN SIZE HEADS
READING, WRITING, SPELLING, AND adding subtracting, multiplying, and deviding are the ONLY SKILLS YOU NEED IF YOU WANT TO KNOW SOMTHING THAT WILL GET YOU SOMEWHERE IF YOU ALREADY ARE BORN WITH CAPABLE QUALITIES.

Like i said, We have to stop relying on school
if people are smart and creative, and can come up with somthing to add to the worlds great list of achievements, school isnt always going to be the reason they do that.
WHY DONT YOU PEOPLE UNDERSTAND!?
WHY DO YOU THINK YOU NEED HIGH UP SCHOOLING TO BE SMART AND SUCCESSFUL IN LIFE.
IF YOUR NOT GOOD AT SCHOOL IT DOESNT MATTER. All school is is memorizing stuff, and it just so happends that if what you are learning is not interesting, IT ISNT GOING TO BE MEMORIZED!!!

THE END






[edit on 2-3-2007 by WINGxZERO]



posted on Mar, 3 2007 @ 12:39 AM
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I guess I had the same experience as Chrissler - 3 hours of homework a night?! Pfft, maybe 3 hours cumulative for the entire week, if that. Maybe kids that take that long are special needs students being "main-streamed" into the "regular population." But I too have heard that number being tossed around, my HS graduating class was '99, so maybe things have changed drastically since then.

If something needs to be changed I'd suggest trimming the fat from the curriculum - remove things like art and music or make them after school programs for people that want them. Being forced to satisfy a arts/music/language requirement to graduate is silly. Blowing an hour a day depending on the semester learning how to draw, play the recorder, or speak Spanish is a waste. People are just going to "credit then forget it" especially in cases like these where it seems particularly useless.

Oh, and get rid of the biggest scam of all - study hall! Heck I enjoyed it when I had it, but I never knew of anyone or heard rumors that anyone was using the time to do anything other than socialize. It's a waste of time.



posted on Mar, 3 2007 @ 08:55 PM
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ok if your not joking, your AN IDIOT

the way you think of art and music and spanish is the way i feel about everything in high school.
we should make everything an elective that way we only choose the classes we ACTUALY WANT TO LEARN IN.



posted on Mar, 3 2007 @ 09:02 PM
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Most high school students don't know what they want to do, so the only way to get them to take things they don't immediately like (but may be needed to take a certain route) is to make them mandatory.



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