State lawmakers looking to add 30 additional days of school instruction to calendar

WAFF 48's Claudia Peppenhorst reporting
Published: Apr. 24, 2023 at 6:22 PM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Two Alabama lawmakers want to make summer vacation a little bit shorter for students. Rep. Terri Collins (R-Decatur) and Rep. Danny Garrett (R-Trussville) are sponsoring a bill that could add 30 extra days of instruction for public schools.

Alabama schools are required to have 180 days of instruction per year and if this bill passes, school boards would have the choice to add another 30 days on top of that. Rep. Collins said one of the most important things to know about this bill is that these extra days will not be mandated.

“It would definitely improve achievement for the students overall with less time,” Rep. Collins said. “This bill doesn’t mandate anything it simply allows for you to modify your calendar to fit what your system thinks would work best for students.”

Rep. Collins said she hopes this bill if passed, will help combat student learning loss during the summer. She said with less time to sit at home students will have a better chance of retaining what they learned from the previous school year.

Schools that opt into the extra days would also be able to apply for a grant that would cover the additional costs of added instruction days and provide more funding for the school.

“Because it’s not a mandate, each school could opt into it,” Rep. Collins said. “So I’m hopeful that we’ll have some innovative school systems that truly want to do something about student achievement.”

According to Rep. Collins, families could also benefit from this bill. She said there would be less stress on parents to make sure their child has care during the summer months.

“I see it as a benefit for teachers, for students and for families,” Rep. Collins said. “They’re looking for good options for their children when they’re out of school during the summer time, I think this could be a benefit for that.”

The bill was introduced by its sponsors last week and is currently in committee.

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