Four and Five-day week debate continues-Pro v.s. Con

The Coos Bay School Board must choose between staying with the four-day school week schedule adopted in the 2011-2012 school year, or reverting back to a five-day week.


By Ashley Barbian | Features Editor


The current sophomore class will miss out on 175,680 minutes of their education over four years at MHS due to four-day school weeks. This is attributed to the decision made in late April 2010 by the Coos Bay School District Board of Education to move to a four-day school week.  The decision was made in consideration of professional development along with budget cuts.

The Coos Bay School District schedule currently requires all students to attend four days of school per week, while staff participate roughly every other Friday in professional development and teacher collaboration time.

Losing one fifth of the school week, students receive less class time, resulting in lower test scores because students do not have the extra time to ask questions or fully comprehend material. This extra class time students are not receiving in the district could prove to be the one extra test question missed on their SAT or ACT. The results received on these tests could make the difference between being accepted into college or not.

When there is no school on the day of an athletic event, there is a lack of attendance. When there is school, the students can instill a campus wide morale and create a larger fan base at the games. The lack of attendance at these social events produces a shortage of students involved in other activities.

Students as well as teachers are drained during the week. The longer days and shorter amounts spent in class result in exhaustion for many people. Teen’s minds eventually become cluttered with the overwhelming amount of homework they receive each day. Students rarely have free time to spend with their families, because they spend so much time trying to catch up on homework and sleep, this resulting in weaker relationships with their families.

For many students who are involved in multiple activities at MHS, it is hard to find time to meet with their groups. Some athletes, for example, do not get home until eight or nine p.m. following their practices due to the four-day week. When athletes have an event, they end up attending only some of their classes. Which is even more of a problem given the shorter week and they have less time to meet with their teachers to get caught up.

At the grade school level it is hard for working parents to find a place for their child to go on Fridays. With daycare rates reaching close to $300 per month, it is not beneficial to not have school on Fridays in a community like Coos Bay where there is a lack of economic prosperity. Parents have to find ways to pay for child care, limiting the time they spend with their families.

According to the Annual Measurable Objective (AMO) report, in 2011, MHS had a graduation rate 67.2 % in comparison to 2012 with a rate of 57% of student’s district wide. A need for change to a five-day week is evident. Coos bay schools are consequently losing a large amount of money from students who have moved schools due to the four-day week.  The district board of administrators needs to reevaluate numbers and take the student’s perspective into consideration. The district needs to make a decision that is beneficial to our community and not a decision that is favorable to our administrators at the district office.


By Katie Duell | Photography Editor


The Coos Bay School District is in the process of deciding whether the district will continue on the current four-day school week schedule it adopted or revert back to something resembling the previous five-day school week. Administrators, teachers, students and community members have been voicing their various opinions about the issue. Though many people would like to return to the five-day week, they are not seeing the positive aspects of a four-day week, most notably all of the advantages that come with the open Friday it provides.

One benefit the four-day system offers is the greater opportunity students have to finish homework over an elongated weekend. With seven periods every day, students receive homework in almost every one of their classes. Students, especially those in advanced classes, find themselves struggling to keep up with all of their work. The free Friday allows students to come in and talk to available teachers, as well as a catch up on extra homework

This schedule creates an extra day to allow upperclassmen an easier way to prepare for college, job shadow, and provide time for scholarship applications, jobs and their senior portfolio. With so many graduation requirements, it is difficult for those looking into colleges, joining the military or finding a job to balance all they need to make it happen. Taking advantage of Fridays gives students an opportunity to accomplish all of their additional graduation requirements and prepare for life after high school, without their without ironically sabotaging their school work in the pursuit of graduation.

With the extended weekend given to students, another advantage of the four-day school week is extra time to spend with families. According to, spending time with family helps build confidence, encourages healthy habits, lowers the risk of drug use and also provides guidance and comfort. Giving students a chance for more family bonding time is crucial in a teen’s development when they are at a more vulnerable age and striving to discover who they are.

A day of school in a four-day school week is packed with massive amounts of information in order for students to get the same information they would in a regular school week. Therefore, if students miss any class time due to an activity, sporting event or doctor appointment, they will find themselves missing important information. With the free Friday, students have a day to come in and confer with their teachers about challenging material. They can also use this day for appointments to avoid missing classes in the first place. Having a set day for all their appointments will help decrease the amount of learning students miss in the classroom. The district also saves money on substitutes with the reduction of teacher absences, heating and transportation fees.

The four-day school week is a great idea for both students and their families. It allows students time to come in and talk to their teachers, become more prepared for the upcoming week, and bond with their families. The current schedule even helps with the student and teacher  attendance rate. The four-day school week gives high school students the time they need in order to succeed, and the school board should keep the schedule as it is.