The school day will be a little bit longer for elementary students in one local district.
Minot Public Schools have added 20 minutes to the day.
Assistant Superintendent of Schools, Tracey Lawson, said the extra time exceeds the state’s required school day length – allowing the district to have some wiggle room to accommodate late starts or early dismissals in case of weather.
KX News spoke with two teachers who say they look forward to the change, while some others may not feel the same way.
“It’ll really help benefit just day-to-day routine,” second-grade teacher, Alexa Rostvedt said.
She says longer school days will benefit her second-grade class.
With 10 minutes tacked on to both ends of the day, she says it will ultimately give her and her students more flexibility, “students aren’t going to notice the change because it’s going to be so integrated into their daily routine, and it’ll just be a positive.”
For similar reasons, kindergarten teacher, Amy Neal, says she’s looking forward to the change, too.
“I see it stretching out and making transitions smoother, like when we’re getting ready to move from math to reading, or from reading to music time.”
Neal says a few more minutes here and there will also give her more time to teach and model social behavior skills.
However, she admits that the change is a bit of an adjustment.
“An extra 10 minutes to the end of the day, even. We’re losing about an hour of prep time a week,” she said. “Some teachers can feel that, but some teachers will not.”
Parents will also need to make the adjustment for drop off and pick up times. We reached out on our KX News Facebook page, where one parent says it helps with her unique work hours, but another says it actually makes picking up her kids more difficult.
Assistant Superintendent Tracey Lawson said the longer days are meant to help teachers meet student needs, and that when comparing the school day to nine other big school districts in the state, Minot Public had the shortest.
“You’re going to be able to just sit back and breathe at times,” Rostvedt said. “Like, okay, we have five minutes here just to transition a little more smoothly.”
Lawson also explained that the school day for teachers is only 15 minutes longer. The teacher school day is now 8:15 am – 4:00 pm, rather than 8:30 – 4:00.
There was no pay change to Minot Public School teachers.