Four-day school week passes in Florida county
Marion County Superintendent Jim Yancy said the switch to four-day school weeks would save $4.5 million.
June 30th, 2011
07:21 PM ET

Four-day school week passes in Florida county

While students in many parts of the world attend school for up to six days a week, students in Marion County, Florida, will receive three-day weekends - every week - starting in the fall of 2012, making it the first county in Florida to make the change.

The Marion County School Board in Florida voted this week in a 4-1 decision to approve a four-day school week for the county’s schools, according to Kevin Christian, the school district’s public relations officer.

The action comes after a massive $24 million cut to next year’s operating budget. Making the switch will save the district around $4.5 million, Marion County School Superintendent Jim Yancey said, according to Orlando television station 13 News.

Students will attend school either Monday through Thursday or Tuesday through Friday, with an additional 75 minutes tacked on each day in the 2012-2013 school year, 13 News says. One day less a week will save on water and energy, along with transportation costs.

A downside, of course, is long, draining class days, with three-day weekends possibly providing too much time between lessons, causing regression in learning.

The Education Commission of the States says the most a school will save is 2.5% of overall budget savings by transitioning to four days a week.

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 21 states already have school districts with public schools offering four-day school weeks.

While Board members originally considered implementing the shorter week for the 2011-2012 school year, the district was able to save in other places instead, but expects another $8 million in budget cuts for the 2012-2013 budget.

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Filed under: Budget • Economy • Education • Florida
soundoff (90 Responses)
  1. Little Brat

    I hope the extra daycare doesn't cost too much and cut in to my allowance.

    July 1, 2011 at 5:54 am | Report abuse |
  2. Scottish Mama

    The dumbing down of American children begins. How long will the children be able to pay attention? Over tired and they will not be able to retain what they are taught.

    July 1, 2011 at 6:24 am | Report abuse |
    • Kyle

      That already occurred when the system was originally created in the industrial age; mindless drones will now become something else... sad indeed ( go private schools )

      July 3, 2011 at 5:06 am | Report abuse |
  3. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    The dumbing down "begins?"
    It began at least fifty years ago.

    July 1, 2011 at 7:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Busy Mom

      How do our "authority figures" expect the economy to turn around when in 10 years from now we will have under-educated people running the show? Education is one of the most important things we can give to our children. Why don't we budget something else? I'm sure there is something else that could have been done to prevent the decision of a 4-day school week. Why weren't parents of these children included in the voting? Whose child is going to suffer from this decision anyway? People in the government's children or grandchildren will not be affected because they can afford the luxury of private schooling. I am moving out of this god-forsaken county. Good luck to those who stay.

      July 1, 2011 at 3:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • MarineVet

      This is another Republican County that is determined to find ways to cut out essential services so that they don't have to criticize the Republican Governor who cut out the State portion of their education funds. In Duval County, they cut out all sports and after school activities.
      By the way, the Governor, Rick Scott, was CEO of a company that paid $1.7 BILLION in fines for Medicare fraud. Kinda makes me sick.

      July 2, 2011 at 8:00 am | Report abuse |
  4. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    Give the kids some marijuana to improve the memories.

    July 1, 2011 at 7:08 am | Report abuse |
  5. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    "...their memories."
    Typo–sorry.

    July 1, 2011 at 7:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Scottish Mama

      Did you forget?

      July 1, 2011 at 7:15 am | Report abuse |
  6. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    Yes. I'm high on illegal weed.

    July 1, 2011 at 7:51 am | Report abuse |
  7. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    Now I'm going to drive my very fast car up to Cape Cod.

    July 1, 2011 at 7:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Scottish Mama

      For a clam bake on the beach, sailing and a weekend of firework displays?

      July 1, 2011 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
  8. Jazzzzzzzz

    Ok fake Joey,stop smoking that stuff.

    July 1, 2011 at 10:08 am | Report abuse |
  9. leane

    Ans what about young kids who come from dual parent working homes? We have now offset the cost of education by imposing extra cost to parents for day care while they work.

    July 2, 2011 at 8:56 am | Report abuse |
  10. OKE

    This makes no sense. Sad day for American children.

    July 2, 2011 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
  11. Nic

    And the rest of the world nods their heads and continues with "wow, those Americans are dumb".
    Yep...less school is exactly what American kids need.

    July 2, 2011 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Scottish Mama

    Schools get money for having children in school. I think if you home school your child and have places or other mothers who can teach and take them on field trips and pay them, maybe the option of home schooling will be the norm. Since the rich will not pay taxes because of the loopholes provided by the government the education system and everything else will suffer first. Till the American people get their fill and say enough is enough.

    July 2, 2011 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  13. saejin

    I'm in Korea now, stationed here since I'm in the military. The Korean kids here go to school 6 days a week plus have after school study programs, plus after school extra curricular activities, plus most play after school sports, plus, plus, plus. I could go on. Summer break only lasts a month and the other holiday breaks are no more than a week at a time.
    In America, we give kids a 2-3 month Summer break, 2 weeks off for Christmas, 1 week off for Thanksgiving, 1 week off for Spring Break, and countless other days off with each school district varying.

    Our emphasis on education has been lost. This 4-day school week might have worked if the school year was 12-months long. Adding extra time to the school day is a great idea if you keep the school week 5-days. Right now, I feel my kids don't get enough time in class as it is. The classrooms are over filled, the teacher doesn't have enough time to spend any one on one time with struggling students, and my local school has gone to a A/B week where certain classes are only given on certain days. Not to mention teachers are underpaid, overworked, and spend their own time and money to give the best education they can to our kids while working within the constraints our state and federal governments have put them.

    I plan to be a teacher when I retire, so hopefully I can make a difference in the school I end up at.

    July 3, 2011 at 1:35 am | Report abuse |
  14. Nicole

    I see this is where "Idiocracy" comes to life.

    July 3, 2011 at 3:22 am | Report abuse |
  15. Former teacher m

    I taught in private school for 4 years. In this school 95% of the students tested higher then grade level on achievement tests by 2-3 grade levels. The graduating seniors scored very well on ACTs and SATs. They earned scholarships to Universities. The school I taught in practiced a 4 day week. It is not necessarily the amount of time, within reason of course, that is spent in the classroom that makes a difference in education. It is the parental involvement and the quality of curriculum being used that is key. This is of course speaking only from my experience.

    July 4, 2011 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
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