The Board of Regents is meeting today to discuss various new educational measures, including one that would add an extra 20 days to school — cutting summer vacation in half. The Board of Regents can’t seem to find a way to prepare students for college, so their latest plan is to increase the amount of time students spend in school. Another one of the Board’s dozen plans includes expanding the school day to eight hours. And there are more tortures, too…
The Regents Board wants to implement a “seat time” policy that would make students have to sit in a class for a mandated 54 hours to get credit for the class. The New York Post correctly identifies the problem with this plan: “The policy has been criticized by proponents of online education and by educators who claim that it stifles accelerated learners.” The Post also interviewed Alisa Berger, the principal of the hi tech NYC iSchool, who said, “It’s ridiculous to say to a student that if you can master this course in 20 hours, you still have to sit in it for 54 hours to get a credit.”
We think Principal Berger is onto something here. How about letting the smartest kids in each school have summer vacation even earlier than they already do and keeping the less-smart kids for longer in the summer? Oh yeah. Summer school. That exists!
Whether the Board of Regents hears our cries or not, they need to save summer vacation.