Extend the School Year (2)

See BCTF Representative Assembly position on extending the school year BCTF School Staff Alert, Nov. 7, 2005

The teachers’ position is completely understandable, especially given the fact that the Minister of Education has implied teachers should ‘catch-up’ but without any pay. While I still personally believe that a paid extension to the school year is a reasonable request the political context is such that an extended school year is not a viable solution. And, as research has demonstrated (see link to article below) the impacts as measured in standardized tests are minimal.

Further to my previous post and suggestion to extend the school year a number of issues have emerged.

(1) The adverse impacts on teachers engaged in graduate study during the summer term if the school year is extended into July.
(2) That time might be added to the school year but that teachers would not be paid for this added time.

I hadn’t considered the first point and I had simply assumed that any extension of the school year would necessarily mean that teachers and other staff would be paid for the additional work done to make up for the missing ten days. This is critical. From my perspective extending the school year in any way would be contingent upon teachers being paid for the added time.

It would appear that a middle ground solution is emerging that would see the postponement of January provincial exams. This would at least accommodate some of the difficulties related to the ten day work stoppage.

I would also like to point to an article on the impact of strikes on student achievement from the U.S. in which it indicates that strikes have had minimal if any real impacts on student test results.Click here for full story.

School Boards reject idea of extended school year.CBC coverage on extended school year question. Further to this issue school boards are saying they don’t think extending the school year is workable.

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