In Favor of Four: Staff, parents, students enjoy shorter school week

Mary Stewart photos
Cayden Tillard, 11, answers a question by superintendant Coley Shadrick about the four-day school week during the public information meeting Tuesday evening. Tillard told attendees at the meeting that moving to the big school for fifth grade last year was good and that students can go in on Fridays if they need extra help.

By: 
Mary Stewart mary@glenrockind.com

An overwhelming amount of positive feedback was the main takeaway from Glenrock School District officials during a special gathering to discuss the district’s four-day school week Tuesday evening at Glenrock Intermediate School.
Principals and teachers from each school, as well as every department head, was on hand to discuss how the shorter week has impacted them both positively and negatively.
“Our goal is to be transparent,” Glenrock School District Superintendent Coley Shadrick said. “We want to hear the good, the bad and the ugly.”
Districts that are on an alternative schedule, like the four-day school week, must reapply with the state every two years. The state also requires a public information and input meeting.
“We’re only in our second year of the four-day week,” Shadrick said. “We know there are still things that can be improved, but each year is more efficient.”
One positive outcome with the shorter week is the money spent for substitute teachers.
“With no school on Fridays, which is when most activities are scheduled outside of school, we don’t have to rely on substitute teachers to fill in,” Shadrick said.
Costs for substitute teachers for the 2017/2018 school year was $80,519 while the cost for the 2018/2019 year dropped to $64,974.
Each school reported that Fridays are now used for staff meetings, staff development, continued learning, course preparation and leadership opportunities.
Teachers are also available on Fridays for students who need to make up tests, catch up on school work and get one-on-one time with instructors.
“The kids seems happier and they’re putting in more effort with the shorter school week,” Glenrock Intermediate School Principal David Sunday said.

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Glenrock Independent

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