Should Schools have Shorter Days

Context

Reference to a current Michigan bill or law that relates in some way to your proposal:

Michigans law on school attendance policies and grades is a child in grade school has to go to school every day they can. If they fail to show up for many days or decide to quit going their parents will suffer the consequences because those kids are still under their parents protection. Once a student is eighteen they are an adult and in charge of themselves so they will take control of the consequence. Attendance Officers are hired by each school district to make sure everyone is attending and if not they visit them and the consequence is typically a misdemeanor. 

Why this proposal will make a difference in the lives of students of all ages across Michigan, or a significant subgroup (by age, background, economic status, and/or region, etc.) of students in Michigan: Having shorter school days across Michigan would benefit all students by giving them more time to study, complete assignments, do extra curricular activities, and get adequate sleep. Not only do students have these responsibilities but they have family and personal lives out of school. Many older students have jobs out of school, and if they got out of school earlier in the day they could work in order to save up for college and other expenses to prepare for, instead of being stuck in school taking classes that won't benefit their interests or future career. By cutting time out of school, the students level of education would not be hurt. The students would be able to retain the same information whether it was taught in an hour or half hour. 

How and where did you learn about the issues underlying your proposal?

We learned the issue underlying our proposal from first hand experience. Our experiences with students in this school make us feel that shorter school days would be beneficial. Should shorter school days have been an ongoing topic in the Michigan concerning the health of teenagers. 

How has your service activity influenced your thinking about this proposal?

Link to your media artifact(s) giving background on the issue:

Our Posters: Benefits of a Shorter School Year

 Our Posters: Shorter School Days

Sources:

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/dec/13/more-school-hours-dont-guarantee-better-test-score/

http://education.seattlepi.com/shortening-school-day-2017.html

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/12/high-school-pressure-stud_n_1090158.html

Consultations

CONSULTATION 1: We contacted our superintendant and they agree it would help our highschool students except it doesnt help our elementary schools because they would have to start earlier and it's dark in the morning so that would not be safe. 

CONSULTATION 2: Our guidance counselor did not agree with this because she knows what many students are going through and feels it's best to keep the hours the same to teach students to get up early and start their day because that is what their going have to do after highschool when they go to work. 

CONSULTATION 3: We emailed our principal but he did not get back to us. 

 

Prospectus: My Prospectus Potential Solutions:

SOLUTION 1: Our first idea is to eliminate one hour or two hours from our day. We have 7 hour periods in our day and four core classes we need to take, so that leaves us with three extra hours of class to take any extra class we have interest in. Leaving at an earlier time can give students more time to do homework or make up any tests before heading to work or sports practice. In case some students wanted to take more encore classes than they can fit in the shorten schedule classes could be scheduled after the school day a few days a week. For example if a student wanted to take an art class but couldn’t find a gap in her schedule she could be in the after school class which could be like an hour long and a few days a week, not everyday. Then this could be a part of the teacher’s schedule.

 

SOLUTION 2: Our second idea is if your personal grade point average is a 3.5 or above your tardies, lates, and absences should not count against you and you should not have to make them up. Having these attendance markings not count against you if you have a high grade point will motivate students to try harder in school and study more to achieve good grades. Students will think, the better I do in school the less I have to go. Also, speaking from experience I have a 3.8 grade point and I have had to spend up to an hour a few times in credit recovery after school with nothing to work on because I turned everything in, so I sat on my phone and didn’t do anything productive.

 

SOLUTION 3: Our third solution is high schools should start a later in the day. If we could wake up later each day we would have more energy which could lead us to do better on classwork and be more attentive in class. Memory is directly affected by sleep and without it you don’t retain as much as when you do get sleep. Also, without enough sleep it is very common for students to depend on caffeine to stay awake in class. Drinking sugary caffeinated drinks every morning is horrible for teenagers health. Students are planning their future and their ways of life and starting bad habits now is not going to have a positive impact on their future. Later start times will have an overall healthy effect on students and their lives.

 

Research process:

Our research process for our topic was a little challenging. Finding very good facts and information was tough because we went through so many websites to find good articles about reasons why schools should have shorter days. What was even more challenging was finding quotes and references because many peoples opinions on shorter school days were mostly against it. We switched from making the school year shorter to individual school days shorter because it seemed more logical and an easier way to solve our problems. 

Author contributions:

Our whole group contributed in each part. We all did our fair share in research and comparing information between websites. Also everyone typed up our rough draft and we split up our final. Our whole group contributed to each part of this assignment. .

Preambulatory clauses

WHEREAS.... students are not getting enough sleep and are having trouble concentrating in class. 

WHEREAS.... students do not have enough time to focus on things they want to do like sports, work, and family time. It's hard to find time for this on top of school and homework. 

WHEREAS....it's easier to fall into bad habits when your constantly not eating healthy, or not sleeping enough. It is bad for students health to not get the right nutrients or no exercise. 

Operative clauses

We want to make school days start later in the day so students get a healthy amount of sleep. We also want the school day to end earlier so we have more time for work, sports, family, and self time. Last, we want our absences and tardies to not count against us if we have a grade point average of a 3.5 or above.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED....

1.  It can be resolved by removing one or two hours from our day. Having shorter days will benefit students because they won't get bored of their classes if their day is short. If the day is too long students will give up earlier and not do good in the classes that are later in the day. 

2. Last, if your grade point is a 3.5 or above you should not need to make up adsences or tardies. Students doing well in school that need to stay after for credit recovery don't have anything to work on and are being unproductive. 

 

(Add more "Resolved" clauses if necessary.)

Counter-arguments:

What are three reasonable arguments against this proposal?

1. More seat time for students in schools means more time for learning.

2. Lengthening the school days allows teacher to have more time to spend with students, on more troubled areas and more difficult materials.

3. If highschool students have later start times because of them not getting enough sleep. Then, the elementary schools would have to go earlier in the morning. If these young kids have to get up earlier, they would have to be outside to catch the bus in the dark which is very dangerous for them.

Costs and funding:

What will your proposal cost (in direct expenses, lost tax revenue, lost economic opportunity, and/or non-monetary costs)? How will you pay for your proposed legislation? Where will/could the funding for your proposal come from?  Who might object to dedicating resources to your proposal (competing interests)?  

 

References:

 

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/dec/13/more-school-hours-dont-guarantee-better-test-score/

 

http://www.debate.org/opinions/should-the-school-year-be-longer

 

https://www.theodysseyonline.com/why-school-should-shorter

 

https://www.bostonglobe.com/ideas/2013/06/01/should-school-year-longer/yHLI249RXCOfVVHWe1g9pO/story.html

 

http://education.seattlepi.com/shortening-school-day-2017.html


https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/12/high-school-pressure-stud_n_1090158.html

 



 

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Total votes: 16