The proposal was first brought to light by Education Secretary Michael Gove back in 2012. Mr Gove stated that “It is their (teachers’) responsibility to ensure that children behave and that children succeed.”
It was also revealed by the Daily Mail that Gove planned to allow schools in England to sack under-performing teachers in as little as nine weeks – about a term.
Academy Principal Roger Puton has explained that longer days, however draining they may be, benefit schools, teachers and students significantly in the long run. Puton found that is Academy, ARK Kings adapted impeccably to extended school hours to meet the needs of students.
Puton was sceptical about the proposal at first but came to find that it embedded into students’ and teachers’ lives very rapidly. He also said that his staff have even gone as far as to requested further extended school hours.
The school have also introduced a system of weekly observation and feedback, where each teacher is paired with a teaching coach who carries out a 10-minute lesson observation. Following the lesson, the coach and teacher meet, discuss what went well and identify actions to improve in the following lessons.
Nowadays, many teachers are stretched to the limits with trying to balance themselves between different students, classes and subjects, along with attempting to maintain a work/life balance. This means that everything not considered utterly academic is peripheral in our state school system as it stands. If school days were longer, children would have the chance to understand the curriculum they are being taught better as well as the chance to learn to interact with their peers and teachers more effectively and maintain relationships. Teachers would also be able to observe students as they work more if there was little time for homework- meaning there would be a much higher chance of students actually completing work well within school itself.
However, school leader Tim Hands discovered that less teaching time directly led to better exam results. Could this mean that children and teachers simply need chance to recover so they can cope with life?
Marianne Calnan (Social Media & Marketing Administrator)