Let Them Learn
Blog: From the Director
Posted Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Finally!  Today at last, public schools of Michigan can hold classes for students without breaking the law.

Teachers have been back for days, and the kids have been bored for weeks.  Finally, teachers can teach and students can learn.

Since adoption of the state law prohibiting public schools from holding classes until after Labor Day, ostensibly to boost tourism, many school districts have delayed the school year so they now are in session after Memorial Day weekend rather than before Labor Day weekend; and neither teacher nor student prefers school in June over school in August. 

Other districts, to save money, simply reduced the number of school days, subtracting all those prior to Labor Day weekend; and in doing so, reducing classroom instructional days below national and international averages.

It is hard to believe we live in a place that prohibits August classes and permits so few instructional days.

If we are really serious about economic development in Michigan, our legislators will praise rather than penalize schools for early and lengthy academic years.  They will first repeal the law that prohibits pre-Labor Day weekend classes in public schools; and second, they will increase the required number of classroom instructional days.  They will first empower schools to expand learning and increase retention, and they will provide schools the necessary resources to schools that do so.

Comments

# gw
Friday, December 30, 2011 4:09 PM
I couldn't agree with you more. We are running schools not based on research but based on trying to save a buck. Yes, educators need to improve the quality of instruction but reducing the number of instructional days and starting the school year after Labor day does not improve instruction and student learning. It hinders student learning and put Michigan's number one resource, its' children, at a serious disadvantage. Thank you for stating it so clearly.

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