Two-month summer overrated?

By: Lauren Harper

Year-round schools offer breaks every month and a half or so, and are seen as more appealing to many people in the country. Photo courtesy Google images

 With school starting up again in the Fort Mill School District and in many other places around the country, summer comes to an end and another ten months of tests, exams, and school sports starts again. Pretty much everyone enjoys those eleven weeks of freedom that are a much-appreciated break, but what if instead, school went for forty-five days and then you were given a full three weeks of vacation? Well this is how school works for hundreds of schools across the nation that function as year-round schools.

            Before, I always thought that going to school year-round would be much more stressful, and would leave students with not much of a summer. But I recently made a friend that actually goes to a year-round school, and after she explained how it worked, I was sold. Having a three-week break about every month and a half sounds like a great break, and in the summer sometimes those breaks are longer, depending on the school. After the first month or so this summer, I was almost ready to go back to school anyway, so that would be perfect for those of us who just need  a bit of a break every once and a while from school. Studies have also shown that teachers prefer the year-round schooling due to the much-appreciated breaks that they would also have those every few months, and more time to go over lesson plans and prepare for the next teaching period.

            Also with year-round schools come other benefits. During the summer, most people forget the skills that they learned the previous year. If there were only short breaks every few months, students wouldn’t have to worry about having to review everything from the previous year that they forgot during break. Personally, coming back to school this year has been the most difficult year of all. With my first AP class, I have to study a lot more than I’m used to, and I’m especially lazy from not having to do anything over the summer.

            There are, of course, drawbacks to year-round school. The main one is that studies have found that students who attend year-round schools do not have significantly better test scores or grades than those who attend the traditional schools. Also, some argue that teachers would have to review as much in the year-round schools as in the traditional schools because students could potentially forget information just as well whether they have a three-week break or an eleven-week one.

            So all in all, I think that Fort Mill as a year-round school would be awesome. Our school is already pretty disciplined in its academics, so enforcing a year-round curriculum probably would not change too much. Just a little food for thought.


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