The negative impacts of COVID 19 and the shift to online learning have been well-documented, but when presented with additional days of school for the supposed purpose of making up ground lost during the pandemic, many families (and districts) have pushed back against the Legislature’s plans to add school days onto the calendar for the 2021-2022 school year.
According to Channel 13, The K5 Plus program adds up to 25 days to the school calendar for kindergarten through fifth grade, while the Extended Learning Time Program (ELTP) adds up to 10 days for elementary, middle, and high schools.
What gives? It is hard to say, but here are a few thoughts:
- It would seem that many families don’t think their children will get much out of the additional class time. In a related vein, perhaps parents view a high school diploma as a mere credential and not as a reflection of actual learning.
- Perhaps families, especially those who have been cooped up in their houses for over a year, would rather have time for a family vacation rather than having their children in school for a week or two extra.
- As was pointed out recently, APS’ student population is dropping. Perhaps families have lost faith in the system entirely and are just checking out?