"Four-Day Week" Information and Research.
The Braymer C4 School District would like to thank everyone who participated in the four-day week calendar survey. The survey results were very favorable to the possibility of a four-day school calendar. Given the feedback from the survey, the Braymer Board of Education has decided to continue looking into and researching the four-day week concept while at the same time allowing the incoming new school administration time to get established with the school and community starting with the 2022-2023 school year. Please check out the four-day week information below. Go Bobcats!
Outside Research information: Four Day Week Resource Center from MSU.<<<<(Click Here)
Four-Day Week FAQ
Q: How did we get to the place where we are giving serious consideration to the four-day week calendar?
A: The discussion began with how we could recruit and retain staff at Braymer C-4. There is a large cost associated with training new teachers and in order to retain staff here at Braymer, conversations were started on ways to keep staff and recruit staff when necessary. A 2021 report from the state of Missouri identified 5% of teaching positions across the state being filled by non-certified teachers, with an expectation for that number to increase due to low numbers of undergraduate education programs at universities across the state. The driving force for this discussion has been centered on teacher recruitment and retention.
Q: What other benefits are there to adopting a four-day calendar?
A: The following are benefits often reported by districts who have transitioned to a four-day calendar:
- Consistency in the calendar – in the traditional five-day calendar, districts often have between 25-35% of weeks that are interrupted by time off for professional development, holidays, or other scheduled breaks. In the four-day calendar, most districts have calendars with 90 +% of weeks being full, four day, uninterrupted weeks. This consistency is helpful as teachers plan and teach their classes.
- Many families report having more time together –while this is not the case for everyone, it is certainly a benefit many families will enjoy.
- Four-day calendar districts often report improvement in student and staff attendance rates.
- Improved attendance rates often lead to improved grades and graduation rates.
- Many districts report student and staff morale improving.
- Often, fewer substitute teachers are needed.
- Improved teacher recruitment and retention.
Q: How much time will be added to a regular school day?
A: The majority of districts transitioning to a four-day calendar add 45 minutes to the school day, generally splitting and adding that time in some form to the beginning and end of the day (i.e. starting at 7:45 and ending at 3:30. This would be an example)
Q: What would this do to the school calendar?
A: Because the state has moved to tracking attendance by minutes rather than days, the start and end of the school calendar would remain similar, with a scheduled start date in mid-late August and scheduled end date in mid-late May.
Q: Are there safeguards in place in case academic achievement drops after moving to a four-day week?
A: Yes, the law stipulates that a school district must return to a five-day per week, 174 day per year calendar if academic achievement drops over two consecutive years. However, because attendance and student engagement are regularly reported to improve with a four-day week, most schools see an increase in academic achievement – not a decrease.
Q: How is academic achievement measured?
A: It is measured on our annual state assessments – the MAP tests and the End of Course tests. The district also considers data from teachers ranging from reading level to reports on student engagement in the classroom.
Q: Will free food service continue?
A: Yes, As of now, we believe the free breakfast and lunch program will continue into next school year. We would plan to continue to offer food service even on the Mondays when school would not be in session.
Q: Will JH/HS practices be held on the 5th day that school is not in session?
A: Yes. Practices will continue in order to meet MSHSAA participation requirements. However, practices would not be held prior to an established time (likely 2:00 or 3:00 pm) to help with childcare concerns.
Q: Will hourly employees be paid less?
A: No, current employees will maintain current rates of pay and adjustments will be made to maintain annual salary amounts. The main purpose of going to a four-day week is to be a teacher recruitment tool, not necessarily to save money.
Q: If we make a change to the four-day week, are we bound to stay with it for a particular length of time?
A: Each Board of Education adopts the annual calendar in the spring for the upcoming school year. We want to gather as much input as possible each year when making that decision. A change does not have to be a permanent change.
Q: There must surely be some disadvantages as well. What are they?
1. One of the first objections is usually related to childcare on Mondays. That is certainly a legitimate concern. The district would do what it could to minimize the impact on parents. The district would look at providing childcare (paid for by parents) but offered at the school to relieve the childcare burden.
2. A second objection is the length of the day. Our students will attend class 45 minutes longer per day than they do currently. While 45 minutes is not really that long a period of time, we will have to be sensitive to the students' needs.
3. Finally, it must be acknowledged that change is difficult and is not often met positively. The district understands this would be a big change, but also acknowledges the perceived benefits and reported positive reaction from both schools and communities who have made the transition to a four-day school calendar.