Earlier this week The Washington Examiner reported that Fairfax County, Alexandria and Arlington public schools are considering starting school before Labor Day. Thanks to the transitive property of journalism, or something else that sounds impressive, other news sources are now reporting this.
However, they're emphasizing something The Examiner did not: that Alexandria wants to extend its school day by 30 minutes. Why did we not spend words on it? Well, Board of Education President Yvonne Folkerts told the superintendent to scrap the initiative after a community forum where parents raised serious concerns about longer school days. It could come up down the line, sure, but it's pretty much off the docket for now.
Folkerts explained to The Washington Examiner:
We’ve gotten lots and lots of e-mails from people who are very much in favor of adding time to the day as well as weeks to the calendar, and then last night [at the community forum] there were people who are opposed to it, and those are mixed and need more information. Last night was mostly people who are opposed to it. … There are a lot of concerns from parents of students, particularly of older students, that they’re already taxed with homework and stress levels, and parents felt we would be asking too much if we asked for more time. Parents of younger students too, particularly kindergarteners – their parents were worried that their elementary kids would come home exhausted.
While Folkerts and the superintendent both support the longer school day, Folkerts acknowledged, "These are legitimate concerns."