The concept of a 4-day work week has been discussed, and implemented, by employers across America for the past few years - that discussion is now happening with school corporations as well. One school in Indiana has already announced a move to a 4-day school week, and you have to wonder if more Hoosier schools will do the same.

Indiana's First 4-Day School

Vinton Elementary School received approval from the Lafayette School Corporation School Board to transition to a 4-day school week starting in August 2024. In this case, that means students will attend school from 8am-3:45pm on Monday through Thursday, which, by the way, is still well above Indiana's minimum requirement for time in the classroom.

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School officials have been considering this idea for more than a year and have spoken with schools in neighboring states that have moved to a 4-day school week. According to the school corporation, this change will be reevaluated after three years.

Will/Should More Indiana Schools Move to a 4-Day Week?

I would be shocked to hear that school corporations throughout Indiana haven't at least considered the possibility of moving to a 4-day school week. I'm sure those discussions are happening, and I'm sure administrators are carefully weighing the pros and cons of such a big decision. Let's take a look at how a 4-day week might affect students, their families, teachers, support staff, and the schools themselves.

Pros of a 4-Day School Week

  • Might attract more teachers.
  • Might be a way for schools to retain high-quality teachers.
  • Could save schools money by reducing overhead (fuel for buses, food costs, general maintenance, etc).

Cons of a 4-Day School Week

  • The added expense of daycare for parents who work five days a week.
  • Some who rely on schools for quality meals would lose that food for a day.
  • The longer days at school (up to an additional 90 minutes) could be really tough for younger students.

There are certainly a lot of factors to keep in mind when considering a move to a 4-day school week, and I'm sure it's just a matter of time before this topic is discussed at more school board meetings around the state.


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