Year round school?

Serious discussions on politics, religion, and the like.

Re: Year round school?

Postby Rope » Fri Sep 21, 2012 1:22 am

I live in Australia and we have school almost all year, we have 6 weeks off over Christmas, 2 at Easter, 2 mid year and we are just starting 2 weeks off near the end of year.
Over the whole year we have 3 or 4 single days off depending on what holidays overlap.
I have always wondered why American students had so much time off, it seems so unfair ;)
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Re: Year round school?

Postby Razmoudah » Sun Sep 23, 2012 2:46 pm

Don't forget that in Spring 2010 the US was rated 50th in the world for education. Last time I checked the world didn't have 50 'first world nations', hell I don't even think it had a full 50 industrialized nations, which means that there are countries where electricity is only available for the wealthy that have better educational systems than the US. That makes it rather clear to me that some type of change is needed, the problem is convincing the American Mob to accept the change.
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Re: Year round school?

Postby doctor100 » Sun Sep 23, 2012 4:01 pm

What nation are you from sir?

I myself live in West Virginia, which has one of the worst education statistics in the USA. However my primary was in New York at a very good public school.
Particularly considerign that so much of morality is emotional based 'not to hurt people' 'don't be mean' 'build community' 'listen' 'be humble', a logical answer doesn't present itself, the problems exist in an emotional framework.
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Re: Year round school?

Postby Razmoudah » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:22 pm

@doctor100: Who is the question being posed to? The previous poster (myself, and aside from some college all of my education is from the public schools of Iowa) or any other poster who cares to post?
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Re: Year round school?

Postby doctor100 » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:35 pm

I was asking you. Such vehemence from a foreigner would have been remarkable.

And yes, most developed country list only include 20-30 nations.
Particularly considerign that so much of morality is emotional based 'not to hurt people' 'don't be mean' 'build community' 'listen' 'be humble', a logical answer doesn't present itself, the problems exist in an emotional framework.
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Re: Year round school?

Postby Razmoudah » Mon Sep 24, 2012 12:37 pm

And considering that 13 years ago when I was still in High School the US ranked 14th shows that this has been a very sudden and sharp decline, much like our economy and government since then as well.
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Re: Year round school?

Postby Ingryter » Mon Apr 01, 2013 12:45 pm

Australian here, as a country that has 'year round school' in so far as the longest break is over christmas(2 months), with the school year for Primary (Years 1-7) and High (8-12) being split over two semesters which themselves has 2 week break between them and a week long break in the middle of each semester...

Packbat wrote:I don't see any obvious problems with year-round school, but reality has a way of seeing problems that theory misses. Have there been any places which experimented with year-round schooling? If so, how did they go?


Its the only schooling style here in Aus (Barring home schooling, which still must meet the government curriculum). Seems to be working fine, out literacy rates suffer due to Socioeconomic and cultural factors rather than the times involved in schooling. I for one found that it provided a more consistent level of education, as you essentially live as a full-time student for your school age years. Only having slightly more holidays than someone who works a full-time contract job.
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Re: Year round school?

Postby Merle » Wed Apr 03, 2013 8:39 am

Extending the length of the school year is a viable option only if we take other actions to lower the stress on the students. If you want to help kids learn faster and better, give them more recess time. Lower the overall pressure level and make sure that they have adequate time every day to run around, outside if possible, and play games and work off excess energy.

This cannot be stressed enough. Human children do not do well in high-pressure environments and the damage incurred can cripple their feelings toward schooling for years afterward.
Neither a creeper nor a jackass be; if you manage these two things, everything else should work itself out.
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Re: Year round school?

Postby Deepbluediver » Wed May 15, 2013 2:04 pm

doctor100 wrote:unfortunately, the majority of year round schooling experiments use equal vacation time, spread out throughout the year.

I'm pretty sure that even accounting for this, studies have found that an unusually long break has an outsized detrimental effect, particularly on poorer students who don't get to go to places like "Space Camp" over the summer. I'll have to find a source to cite though, so don't quote me just yet. In addition, with all the breaks and holidays some one did the math and found out that american students typically spend less than 180 days a year in school, and that there is a direct and noticable correlation between days in the classroom and academic performance.

Taking into account the winter holidays (Chistmas, mainly) and the traditional summer break, a better format might be 1 month off in the summer (probably July), 1 month off in the winter (January), and a 1 week break each in the fall and spring.

That way no one period of non-schooling is too extensive.


MysticWav wrote:I kind of like a reform suggestion a while back that suggests flipping instruction and homework around. You watch the 'lecture' as it were at home on your own time at your own speed and then go to school periodically to do the homework where you can get professional assistance with items you may be having trouble with. Seems like it would be a more efficient use of resources in terms of buildings and personnel too.


That's kind of like the format that a lot of colleges use (1 large lecture, with study groups and TA's); I don't know how effective it would be with younger students though.
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Re: Year round school?

Postby crayzz » Thu May 16, 2013 8:02 am

Merle wrote:Extending the length of the school year is a viable option only if we take other actions to lower the stress on the students. If you want to help kids learn faster and better, give them more recess time.


While we're at it, make school begin and end later in the evening. I don't have the source on hand (I'll look for it later when I have the time), but teenagers tend to stay up later, partly because of their hormones. This places them at a pointless disadvantage when school begins at 8:30 in the morning. Schools with later start times (like a 12-7:30pm schedule) tend to have better students, simply because the students sleep better on average.
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