Does Year Round School Improve Education?
The American education system traditionally operates on a 10 month schedule that contains a substantial amount of large breaks. A suggested argument is, do these large periods of free time decrease a student's performance? In response, the possibility of year round school calendar was put forward. However, does this method improve the effectiveness of education?
An example of a calendar when using year round school is dubbed the 45-15 plan. This essentially equates to students attending school for 45 days and then spending 15 days off. The traditional holiday breaks are still embedded into year round school. Alternatively, such plans as the 90-30 or the 60-20 are incorporating the exact same technique, but with increased days in and out of school.
Arguments surrounding the idea of year round school are loud from both sides. Those in favor of the scheme have their fair share of valid points. An interesting argument is that during the large summer break, students get incredibly bored and are always inclined to forget what they have learned. It is suggested by implementing a year round school plan; student's ability to retain what they are taught would surely improve.
In the same respects, it is suggested that school buildings themselves are largely nugatory during the summer. By implementing a year round school plan, students have a greater potential of participating in enrichment during the short break intervals. This therefore means that a school site is being used effectively, more often. However, the opposing arguments carry slightly more statistical evidence.
Studies conducted on the correlation between academic performance and calendar types proved inconclusive. The conclusions found by neutral researchers such as Hart (1993) and Kreitzer/Glass (1990) suggested that there was no significant relationship between the two factors.
However, straying away from the scientific evidence, there were more arguments based on several basic concepts. For example, there is nothing to suggest that students would suffer from mental displacement any less through a 3 week break, than they would from a 10 week break. In addition to this, the scheme would result in teachers having to perform four student reviews as opposed to just a single one at the beginning of the year.
Futhermore, the adaptation of a year round school plan could render such solutions as summer camps useless. By decreasing attendance as well as the camps income, it could potentially result in a vast loss of summer camp sites. In a similar light, the availability in part time summer employment for students would also decrease considerably.
Overall, through the conclusions that were found by the impartial researchers, you would assume that that is enough to highlight that performance is not affected by the schools calendar. However, there are always going to be people who disagree. Essentially, the decisions on the effectiveness of year round school are left mostly to individual interpretation.
There are valid arguments emerging from both sides. Nevertheless, the most important factor is that the students are receiving the best education, as well as the best formula for success.