Opinion: Year-round school isn’t beneficial for students

Marta Bourget, Staff Writer

There’s 104 days of summer vacation and school comes along just to end it, and the annual problem of our generation is finding a good way to spend it.
Well, unlike the main characters from “Phineas and Ferb,” Hayes students only have 80 days of summer vacation, but the problem of running out of things to do is still present.
As the long summer months approach, some people wonder if the break would be better cut short.
Year-round school is not a new idea. Emerging in the 1970s, it was put into action originally with the idea of reducing learning loss and helping in overcrowded classrooms.
However there is little evidence that backs up the idea that year-round schooling provides these benefits.
A typical year-round school schedule breaks the year into learning blocks of 45 days followed by a school break, essentially cutting summer break in half while lengthening the other breaks. For example, in the regular school year, spring break is only five days, while a year-round school schedule might be 15 days.
In reality, year-round schooling has around the same amount of days in school as the regular school year schedule.
The big benefit of year-round school is that students don’t lose as much information over the summer since the break is much shorter. But, there hasn’t been any reliable and unbiased research to properly back this claim. Some learning might be saved over summer break but research has been done to prove that year-round school kids receive a similar amount of learning loss over their other, longer breaks.
The only conclusive positive of year-round schooling is that more students could attend the same school by alternating student breaks and schedules. By having different groups of students stagger their weeks off for break, it has been found that around 33% more capacity can be reached with year-round schooling.
However this pro is immediately outweighed by the cons, with increased financial needs for maintenance, transportation and organization as well as the disruption caused by the constant movement of teachers and students rotating classrooms.
The shortened summer can also be detrimental to students who want to do activities over summer break. Many students attend summer camps, workshops, or work jobs during the summer. With a year-round schedule, children can’t get these enriching experiences or be able to earn money for work.
Covid brought people together to find alternative schooling methods, but not every schooling system is built the same. Year-round schooling is brought forward every so often as a new, superior method to schooling, when in reality it is equal or even lesser than a typical school schedule.