4/7/2013 7:56:00 AM Two-week spring break: Will students come back refreshed or sluggish? Students return to school Monday
By SARA KOVACH email@example.com
For the first time, many Henry County students enjoyed a two-week spring break. Sunday marks the last day before students return back to school for a busy home stretch to the academic finish line.
School officials expressed some pros and cons to The Courier-Times about how the break may affect students long-term.
Kevin Knott, a Charles A. Beard School Board member, said the feedback received from the community has been all around positive about the situation.
"It does take a little getting used to at the start," Knott said. "I however don't see the two-week break detrimental to student's academic success."
Knott said a school's calendar year has a mandatory of 180-days, which gives flexibility to school s when choosing how to space out breaks. Making sure the calendar is balanced is what is most important, according to Knott.
"Breaks are essential to have in a school year," Knott said. "It helps students to learn how to balance their own lives. An important skill to learn for later."
Knott said since technology today is readily available, he encourages students to take time during a break to research more about a school topic or to find reading material.
"It's always great to keep your mind active, but it's also important to spend the time with family," Knott said. "Overall, our job is to help students achieve academic success. I haven't heard any negative comments about the break not doing that."
Don Hamilton, former New Castle High School teacher, holds a different opinion about the two-week break. He prefers more time to be added to summer break.
"I'm for big blocks of time. I think it's better than two-weeks here and there off during the school year," Hamilton said. "My own daughter after a week during spring break didn't know what to do."
Hamilton said he has always been a supporter for adding a fully funded, extended summer program. He believes after a few years, school officials will rethink having a two-week spring break.
Whichever the case, both school officials want to see more research and data supporting the benefits or drawbacks of a two-week spring break.
"I'm interested in what teachers have to say once students return back to school," Knott said. "I see no necessity to change the break length at the moment. If it would come up for review however, we would make sure to make the best decision for everyone."
Sara Kovach is a staff writer for The Courier-Times. Follow her on Twitter@s_kovach.