Letter: School-hour mandate unreasonable

March 20, 2014 

People may think our government is disorderly. The reality is that multiple perspectives will always exist and cause people to disagree; thus, the political system was created to bring order to these differing viewpoints. Recently, I believe that the public education system (grades K-12) is being overlooked and misunderstood by government.

As a response to the McCleary case and legislation approved in 2009, the Washington Legislature mandated changes to the number of hours school is in session each year -- 1,080. This issue is advocating longer learning time to improve academic achievement, strengthen instruction and provide a well-rounded education for the children in the public school system.

As much as I agree with the values of 1,080, I do not agree with spending the funds for an extra three to seven minutes per classroom period. This concept would burden the school districts because of changes needed for bell schedules, bus routes and building budgets.

When thinking about it, what do most students do in the last three to seven minutes of class? Pack up. Therefore, I believe that 1,080 hours is not a reasonable mandate.


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