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Winthrop High School's Premier News Site Since 2019

The Viking Times

Winthrop High School's Premier News Site Since 2019

The Viking Times


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An Overview of 4 Day School Weeks: Why Do They Exist And Should We Have Them?


Hundreds of schools across the country are now switching to a four-day school week. It is estimated that around 900 school districts across 26 states, and increase from the original 662 since 2019-2020, have adopted this new school schedule. The changes are mainly in rural areas and western parts of the U.S. For example, in Missouri, the number of districts on a four-day week has more than doubled since March 2020 from 12% to 30%. These were implemented over concerns over the loss of learning time after the pandemic. In many other districts across the U.S., they are hoping to attract more teachers by offering longer weekends and $15,000 more per year than other districts. The idea of a four-day school week gained popularity over the past decade but is at its peak as a result of the national teacher shortages. In an article by CBS News they stated, “It’s the selling point in an era when schools are facing a national teacher shortage.” Experts who are watching the trend believe there is a better way of tackling a teacher shortage, however there is not much people can do about it. 

The school week operates either with Monday or Friday off, usually Monday to Thursday or Tuesday to Friday. However, schools increase the length of the day to deliver the same amount of instructional time over fewer days. Some schools have even offered optional enrichment classes, tutoring, and teacher development lessons during the traditional 5th day. There are many benefits to this new    “school week,” like cost savings, improved student attendance, and an increase in teachers’ morale. Schools can save more money on transportation, especially in areas where students may need to travel long distances to get to school. Plus, some studies have shown that student’s attendance does increase during the four-day week. Longer weekends for the students give them more time to rest and engage in their extracurricular activities which will lead to better attendance for the week. In turn, this would improve everyones academic performance. Additionally, with an extra day to plan lessons and grade assignments, teachers can feel more prepared, therefore they would have better job satisfaction.

But there are some cons to this schedule. Families argue that longer school days can be difficult for students, mainly elementary students. It can pose a challenge for families that are unable to find affordable arrangements for the 5th day. Lastly, a loss of wages for support professionals such as bus drivers and food service workers. 

Honestly, having a four-day school week would be easier, at least for me. Being an athlete and part of a few extracurriculars means I have a very busy schedule. So having the extra days to rest and do my work would be very beneficial as I would feel less stressed and have more energy to do my work in school or at home. What do you think? 


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