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Would a Four Day School Week Improve Student Achievement?

Would a Four Day School Week Improve Student Achievement?

A new study suggests that shortening the school week to four days versus five would improve student test scores.

The study, published in "Education and Finance Policy," takes a look at 14 different schools that made the switch to four-day school weeks and added several hours to each school day to compensate for the instructional time.

Over the course of a two-year period, the researchers tracked math and reading scores of the students to determine if the change would have a positive effect on achievement.

The researchers were admittedly surprised at what they found. Though reading scores remained about the same, math scores improved.

"At the end of the two-year period, math scores had actually improved for fourth and fifth grade students. Reading scores stayed about the same. Researchers said the lack of a drop was a positive sign," according to KSL.com.

Many school districts across the country have already switched to the four-day school week and many others are considering doing so.

"Colorado has more than 30 percent of school districts operating under the four-day system. Schools in New Mexico and Wyoming also participate in the schedule, while school districts in Oregon, Missouri, Florida and Georgia are considering adopting it, according to the report.

The researchers noted that their study is preliminary and further research needs to be done; they admitted that the study can only make a statement on the positive effects of four-day school weeks in rural schools. Further research to include urban schools is needed.

Read the full article here and comment with your thoughts below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

09/16/2015

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