Monday, March 25, 2013

State Report: No Substantial Savings in 4-Day Idaho School Week

Posted By on Mon, Mar 25, 2013 at 9:23 AM

A new review from the Idaho Department of Education indicates that even though 44 school districts and charter schools throughout Idaho have shifted to a four-day week, the districts are not seeing substantial energy savings.

The Idaho State Journal reports that the school superintendent of one of the districts, in the Caribou County community of Soda Springs, said many of his district's savings coming from decreased work schedules have been eaten up by increases in utility, fuel and insurance costs. Superintendent Alan Erickson told the Journal that his district initially saved $80,000-$100,000, but the cost of fuel had eroded those gains.

The Idaho Department of Education’s Review of a 4-Day School Week report indicates that most districts that switch to a four-day schedule see some cost savings, but it’s not substantial.

“Most cost savings come as a result of decreased work schedules for classified staff who work on an hourly basis,” according to the report.

But the report is reluctant to make any recommendation, saying, "There is a lack of evidence that the four-day school week helps or hurts student achievement."

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