Student voicesFrequent breaks are puzzling
By: Marnie Sciamanda, Rosemount Town Pages
School is a necessity I cannot avoid, whether I complain about it or not. I try not to complain about it too much, but sometimes it is inevitable.
I enjoy the learning that goes on in school, partly because it is interesting and partly because I know how important it is. But there are certain, perhaps minor aspects of school I cannot understand, including the school’s calendar. It may seem like a peculiar thing to be annoyed by, but I am.
Quite obviously, the school week lasts five days, Monday through Friday, from early September to mid-June. Lately, I have noticed how different this year’s calendar has been. Nearly every other week has been shortened for some reason or another—staff development, conferences, holidays, and even completely unexplained extended weekends. These breaks can be extremely convenient, especially for the teenage sleep schedule. However, the ineffectiveness of having too many days off of school during the school year outweighs the minor rest period we receive with each of these frequent long weekends.
The occasional holiday and of course the traditional spring and winter breaks are not the problem, but I do not recall having so many other random days off in middle or elementary school. Perhaps the most unfortunate aspect of these days off is how misleading they are. Another day tacked on to the weekend seems as if it would encourage rest, sleep and other non-school activities. Instead, in order to compensate for these days off of school, teachers often assign even more homework over long weekends.
Still, for some students, completing school work at home is more desirable than waking up early to go to school for the day.
Perhaps the most convincing argument against so many days off is that these days affect the length of summer vacation. The school calendar only needs to be a certain number of days, so if we could condense the period of time these school days are completed in, at least one week could be added on to summer vacation. To me, that one week of summer outweighs five long weekends where I will just be doing homework the entire time.
Many students disagree with this, and I can understand why. But in the long run, the seemingly mysterious days off of school are not necessary, and are practically made up by the extra homework I have to complete at home anyways.
Among students, I am taking quite the controversial stance. But in the long run, I think the logic behind having fewer breaks is sound in the end. The frequent long weekends can be convenient, but come late May, most students would do anything for the school year to be over, even just one week early.