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The Student News Site of St. Charles North High School

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Should School Start Later in the Year?

District 303 started school on Monday, Aug. 14 this year.
Lincoln Pixton
District 303 started school on Monday, Aug. 14 this year.

Personally, summer vacation is my favorite time of the year, as having free time is a lovely thing. That being said, I can appreciate the desire to return to school after summer. But in the past few years,  it’s felt like school has started way too soon. In the middle of August when it’s 90 degrees, and the school building doesn’t have air conditioning, it leaves many students wondering, “Why can’t the school year start later?” 

There are certainly proven benefits to starting the school year early. Students tend to lose some of the information they’ve learned in school over the summer. This phenomenon known as summer learning loss is concerning to many educators and administrators. Summer learning loss can affect how prepared students will be in the next semester, which consequently affects their performance in their classes

For many kids, learning over the summer is the last thing on their minds. Between athletic camps, jobs and traveling, most students aren’t that worried about retaining information they learned last school year. But for administrators and educators who get paid for us to learn, it’s vital we retain the information we learn. To combat summer learning loss, administrators have slowly been making summer break shorter to give students more time to learn (and more importantly less time to forget what they learned).

While shortening summer break may reduce summer learning loss, it’s not a popular decision with students.  Students generally prefer to have summer break during the hottest months of the year rather than having to sit in a classroom.  

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“August is the warmest part of the year, so [it] should be a part of summer,” said Geo Spyrnal, freshman. 

 Ideally, many students want to begin school when August is over and temperatures begin to go down. 

“[School] should start after Labor day because the weather starts to cool down a little bit and you’re in fall mode, thinking [about] school starting,” said Spyrnal. 

From my perspective it makes the most sense to start school later in the year. Putting aside the issue of summer learning loss, what’s been very apparent to me is how important it is that our building is ready for us to return to school. Our building has faced some unfortunate mishaps as the school year began. From the heating and cooling issues to the discontinuation of the mobiles, our building naturally needs more time for maintenance as years go by. By starting the school year later, we would allow necessary maintenance on our building to occur while students aren’t in class.  This will benefit students as they’ll be more comfortable at school and subsequently they’ll learn more and get better grades. In my opinion, extending summer break, even by a few days in order to focus on school maintenance would ultimately benefit students more than if they had a few extra days in a school with heating and cooling issues. 

Chicago’s Public Schools, District 299, began the semester on August 21, a week after we returned. If the largest school district in Illinois starts the school year later, why shouldn’t we? With students having commitments over the summer and the growing need for school maintenance time, it seems reasonable to conclude that the school year should begin later. If we start school later, students will ultimately perform better as they’ll be learning in a more comfortable environment. In my eyes, starting school a week later is a win-win for everybody; students and administrators!

 

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About the Contributors
Lincoln Pixton, Media Team
Lincoln Pixton is a Sophomore. This is his first year on staff with the Stargazer. He is a part of the writing staff as well as our video news!
Jadyn Murvine, Opinions Editor
Jadyn Murvine is a staff writer for the Stargazer and this year's Opinions Editor. She is a sophomore, and this is her second year on staff. Jadyn engages in student journalism because she wants to branch out her extracurriculars and get out of her comfort zone to enhance her writing skills and create articles to share with others.

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