- The Washington Times - Friday, October 1, 2010

In the article “Obama: Money alone can’t solve school problems” (Web, Politics, Sept. 27), President Obama said that a longer school year will benefit students. In an interview, he said, “The idea of a longer school year, I think, makes sense.” I feel that Mr. Obama is incredibly mistaken when he says that.

The article also states, “U.S students attend classes, on average, about a month less than children in most other advanced countries.” From my experience in school, I have found that to be true. It is difficult to encourage children to care about school enough to go every day and take full advantage of the wonderful resourses given to them. If children do not want to go to school now, how is tacking on extra days going to excite them any more? The kids who do not go regularly anyway are only going to dread school even more. They obviously feel there is too much school already and are not getting the push to care.

Also, there is so much pressure and hard work placed on the kids who do well anyway that adding extra days will only intensify the year and possibly discourage them from attending and working. Instead of trying to elongate the year, what school systems should focus on is making the days as productive as possible. Hiring teachers who make kids excited to learn and taking out unproductive, “lazy” days and creating fun clubs that make kids want to come to school are what the schools should be focusing on. Additional days of boredom are not what the students need or want.

REBECCA LEECH

Pittsburgh



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