Tuesday, February 24, 2009

House Takes Step Toward 4-Day Week Option

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - The Missouri House gives first-round approval to a bill that would give school districts the option of holding classes four days a week.
Districts choosing a four-day week could lengthen their school days by an hour and have 32 fewer days of instruction each year. The total number of annual instruction hours would stay the same.
The bill needs another House vote before moving to the Senate. Supporters say some rural school districts are interested in the idea because it would save money on transportation and utilities.
But critics raise concerns about a potential drop in educational quality and an increase in day care costs for some parents.


Busplunge said...

Lengthen the school day by an hour-

Hours of instruction. which is better for a student? 5 classes of 5o minutes each or 4 classes of 60 minutes each?

this is a bad idea.

- Roth said...

There has been a 2nd read on HB 944 and it appears like it's a done deal! This also seems like a head-nod to MO school superintendents - a significant number who have a law suit against the state gov't for not fully funding the Foundation Formula. The details of this acquiescence are: if the Foundation Formula ISN'T fully funded (next year is the only time it WILL be in 15+ years), then superintendents are "excused from compliance" and have the right to take funds from: (A) their professional development budgets (teachers don't need to learn anymore, anyway, right? Can you smell the vendor-vultures circling?); (B) minimum summer school enrollment numbers; (C) teacher salaries (won't THAT boost morale?); and when the transportation budget is less than a 60% reimbursement, super's can take from their transportation budget (thus reducing to a 4-day week, as long as their MINUTES of school are logged). Superintendents like it because now they have more discretion on how to appropriate their district funds.

Teacher organizations, rightfully, dislike it.

Between this & HB2, compliance for NCLB is in jeopardy and so is teacher's professional learning. Maynard Wallace (and Allen Icet on HB2) disappointingly lack support for MO teachers and their students.