President Obama made an announcement on Monday that has kids around the country crying foul. He wants to extend the school year to improve education and to make American students more competitive with students around the globe.
The school year in the U.S. is roughly a month shorter than in other countries. Obama's contention is that the extended summer break puts American kids at a competitive disadvantage in the global economy. "The idea of a longer school year, I think, makes sense," he said on the "Today" show, when asked if kids should go to school year-round.
This isn't the first time the president has talked about extending the school year. In a speech last year, Obama said, "We can no longer afford an academic calendar designed when America was a nation of farmers who needed their children at home plowing the land at the end of each day. That calendar may have once made sense, but today, it puts us at a competitive disadvantage. Our children spend over a month less in school than children in South Korea. That is no way to prepare them for a 21st-century economy."
The president also said that though per-student spending has gone up in the country, student performance has gone down, which shows that "money without reform will not fix the problem." He urged the creation of programs that would support teachers, but also those that would evaluate teachers based on student performance.
What do you think? Does a longer school year make sense or will it be a burden to an already over-burdened school system?