Proposals to lengthen the school year is rapidly gaining support across the country.
Proponents say too much knowledge is lost over summer vacation, and longer school years would give low-income children more access to healthy, school-provided meals.
One major proponent of longer school years is Education Secretary Arne Duncan, who believes longer school years will help our young people be better equipped to compete globally.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan, a chief proponent of the longer school year, says American students have fallen behind the world academically.
“Whether educators have more time to enrich instruction or students have more time to learn how to play an instrument and write computer code, adding meaningful in-school hours is a critical investment that better prepares children to be successful in the 21st century,” he said in December when five states announced they would add at least 300 hours to the academic calendar in some schools beginning this year.
The three-year pilot project will affect about 20,000 students in 40 schools in Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York and Tennessee.
There is no short supply of detractors, however.
Opponents of such measures argue that students need summer vacations to give their brains a chance to rest and recharge, study particular subjects of interest, and to allow for family activities and vacations.
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