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10 Telling Studies Done on Longer School Days

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❶This allows us to estimate what the proficiency rates in each subject would have been had those schools been open for all scheduled instructional days prior to the assessment.

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Why School Should Be Shorter
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We do not sell email addresses. Researchers have recently begun to learn more about the effects of time spent on learning from natural experiments around the country. This new body of evidence, to which we have separately contributed, suggests that extending time in school would in fact likely raise student achievement. Below we review past research on this issue and then describe the new evidence and the additional insights it provides into the wisdom of increasing instructional time for American students.

We also discuss the importance of recognizing the role of instructional time, explicitly, in accountability systems. Whether or not policymakers change the length of the school year for the average American student, differences in instructional time can and do affect school performance as measured by No Child Left Behind. Ignoring this fact results in less-informative accountability systems and lost opportunities for improving learning outcomes.

More than a century ago, William T. Harris in his Report of the Commissioner [of the U. Bureau of Education] lamented,. The boy of today must attend school It is scarcely necessary to look further than this for the explanation for the greater amount of work accomplished…in the German and French than in the American schools. The National Education Commission on Time and Learning would echo his complaint one hundred years later. But the research summary issued by that same commission in included not one study on the impact of additional instruction on learning.

Researchers at that time simply had little direct evidence to offer. The general problem researchers confront here is that length of the school year is a choice variable. Because longer school years require greater resources, comparing a district with a long school year to one with a shorter year historically often amounted to comparing a rich school district to a poor one, thereby introducing many confounding factors.

A further problem in the American context is that there is little recent variation in the length of school year. Nationwide, districts generally adhere to and seldom exceed a school calendar of instructional days. And while there was some variation in the first half of the 20th century, other policies and practices changed simultaneously, making it difficult to uncover the separate effect of changes in instructional time. Among the first researchers to try to identify the impact of variation in instructional time were economists studying the effect of schooling on labor market outcomes such as earnings.

Robert Margo in found evidence suggesting that historical differences in school-year length accounted for a large fraction of differences in earnings between black workers and white workers.

Using differences in the length of the school year across countries, researchers Jong-Wha Lee and Robert Barro reported in that more time in school improves math and science test scores. Oddly, though, their results also suggested that it lowers reading scores. In , Ozkan Eren and Daniel Millimet examined the limited variation that does exist across American states and found weak evidence that longer school years improve math and reading test scores. Work we conducted separately in and provides much stronger evidence of effects on test scores from year-to-year changes in the length of the school year due to bad weather.

In a nutshell, we compared how specific Maryland and Colorado schools fared on state assessments in years when there were frequent cancellations due to snowfall to the performance of the very same schools in relatively mild winters.

Because the severity of winter weather is inarguably outside the control of schools, this research design addresses the concern that schools with longer school years differ from those with shorter years see research design sidebar. We also take into account changing characteristics of schools and students, as well as trends in performance over time. The advantage of this approach is that weather is obviously outside the control of school districts and thereby provides a source of variation in instructional time that should be otherwise unrelated to school performance.

Furthermore, Maryland and Colorado are ideal states in which to study weather-related cancellations. In addition to having large year-to-year fluctuations in snowfall, annual snowfall in both states typically varies widely across In Maryland and Colorado, some districts are exposed to much greater variation in the severity of their winters than others, which allows us to use the remaining districts to control for common trends shared by all districts in the state.

Further, because we have data from many years, we can compare students in years with many weather-related cancellations to students in the same school in previous or subsequent years with fewer cancellations. Although cancellations are eventually made up, tests are administered in the spring in both states.

This is months before the makeup days held prior to summer break. In Marcotte and Hansen , we estimate that each additional inch of snow in a winter reduced the percentage of 3rd-, 5th-, and 8th-grade students who passed math assessments by between one-half and seven-tenths of a percentage point, or just under 0.

To put that seemingly small impact in context, Marcotte reports that in winters with average levels of snowfall about 17 inches the share of students testing proficient is about 1 to 2 percentage points lower than in winters with little to no snow.

Marcotte and Steven Hemelt collected data on school closures from all but one school district in Maryland to estimate the impact on achievement. The percentage of students passing math assessments fell by about one-third to one-half a percentage point for each day school was closed, with the effect largest for students in lower grades. Hansen found effects in Maryland that are nearly identical to those reported by Marcotte and Hemelt, and larger, though statistically insignificant, results in Colorado.

Hansen also took advantage of a different source of variation in instructional time in Minnesota. Utilizing the fact that the Minnesota Department of Education moved the date for its assessments each year for six years, Hansen estimated that the percentage of 3rd- and 5th-grade students with proficient scores on the math assessment increased by one-third to one-half of a percentage point for each additional day of schooling. While our studies use data from different states and years, and employ somewhat different statistical methods, they yield very similar results on the value of additional instructional days for student performance.

We estimate that an additional 10 days of instruction results in an increase in student performance on state math assessments of just under 0. To put that in perspective, the percentage of students passing math assessments falls by about one-third to one-half a percentage point for each day school is closed.

Other researchers have examined impacts of instructional time on learning outcomes in other states, with similar results. For example, University of Virginia researcher Sarah Hastedt has shown that closures that eliminated 10 school days reduced math and reading performance on the Virginia Standards of Learning exams by 0.

Economist David Sims of Brigham Young University in took advantage of a law change in Wisconsin that required all school districts in that state to start after September 1. I think that if we didn't have any homework than it would help us to be more active and be more interactive with our family members.

Children would be much more healthy. When students go out to recess,Its only a fraction of the time students should play outside.

Going home earlier would allow kids to keep healthy knowledge,and good health. Its better than staying inside all day with barely any outside play. Students should be able to see their parents more than staring at a whiteboard,and they should be as healthy as possible.

I am a child that is suffering now with these long school days. I have to wake up at 5 and leave my ouse by 5: By the time i get out of school and finish my activities after school i get home at Then i am too tired to even do hw or even study for a test if we have one the next day.

I think school days should be made shorter because kids cant study when they learn a lot and then have to remember it and then do homework. And some kids have after school activities. So after their back at around 7 o clock and then have homework and have to go to bed.

Children already are lacking in education, shortening the school day would decrease the amount of time a child has to learn. With the decrease funding in education, our school days have already been cut which ultimately hurts the children. We need to increase funding in order to pay our teachers for the longer hours. You guys want no homework for students. Then you want shorter school days. And then you want students to be paid to go to school. This is all crap.

How can students learn with no homework and 3 hours of school? I do not think we need shorter days because, if the days happened to be shorter kids would have more free time where they would play video games, sleep, watch tv etc.. Things that well aren't going to get you a good job. Kids need more time in school to focus on things that are way more important then sitting around doing nothing.

Yes sometimes i agree school days are long but honestly when I think actually think about they should be longer beause now a days kids forget what they learn't so quick. Thinking i'm pretty sure lots of kids arent going to have decent jobs when they are older due to lac of education. Also the school sceduals should be moved around so they learn the more important things when they can focus better not right when they wake up. Kids will get more education.

The kids will also have a longer summer if the school days are longer! Also, if they have more time in school, they will have more work to do and have more time to be with their friends which means less homework. They will have more friend time. Students today have too much distraction at home and some many do not have the tutoring or encouragement needed to make education important.

Our country is falling behind. Other countries who emphasize education and make it a priority are showing higher results in learning and improvement to their economy directly. Being strict and reinforcing rules is not an option. This is part of the lack of students pursuing an education. School days should not be shorter. Over the years, they have seemed to shorten as it is, and I don't believe kids are getting a proper amount of knowledge in their classes.


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Shorter school days research as the main topic of universities essay with geography coursework data presentation. These manifestations could be days school shorter research other explanations for such dealer certified cars come with age.

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While longer school days may work for some students and districts as a whole, research on the issue is divided. Some studies have found little to no benefit to extending the school day, at least not without making serious other changes to the school’s curriculum as well.

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Contributing to the stress of the day, a wide amount of students, including younger ages, are consumed with a variety of after-school activities including clubs, jobs, and . Because longer school years require greater resources, comparing a district with a long school year to one with a shorter year historically often amounted to comparing a rich school district to a poor one, thereby introducing many confounding factors.

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Shorter school days would lead to healthier students. Because of the shortened school days, students would have more time to be active after school. The shorter school days would also benefit our sports teams. Teams of all sports would have more time to practice. The shorter school days would also lead to students having more fun after school. shorter school days Posted by Sydney Montgomery in English 3 on Monday, May 1, at pm All students have ever complained about in school is the hours.