Hillsborough County Believes Four Day Weeks Will Make Teachers Flock to Schools


Hillsborough County School Board debates alternative solutions to solve the teacher shortage endemic that is sweeping the county especially after the millage law was rejected, denying teachers a salary increase. In previous years, teacher to student ratios were never as low as they are today with classes overwhelmed and crowded which has placed immense stress on teachers and their responsibilities. Courtesy of Tampa Bay Times.

Hillsborough County Superintendent of Schools Addison Davis is considering radical solutions to the teacher shortage including adopting a four day school week after the millage property tax bill was rejected which was intended to increase teacher salaries.  

The goal of potentially adopting these shorter weeks is teachers around the country will be drawn to Hillsborough County schools and its unique schedule. Of course, many students love the idea of permanent three day weekends.  

“To be honest, I think it’s a good idea on the student side, we have two days to do whatever but then with this, we [would] have an extra day to get caught up on work and study,” said freshman Aaron Cohen.  

However, would four day weeks still allow for enough class time to complete the weeks necessary lessons? It is likely that teachers would have to largely adjust their plans to conform to these shorter weeks. 

“There’s several times where we just chill in the class after instruction so if [teachers] just started the next days lesson in that time we could manage with four day weeks,” said Cohen. 

The next question is what will the county do to make up for the missed day? Will classes be longer? Will breaks be shortened? Will curriculum be adjusted and topics removed?  

“I don’t like the idea of the four day week because what’s probably going to happen is we’ll get way less time off for summer and breaks and we’ll have a ton of extra homework due to the lack of class time,” said junior Nicolas Thompson, a student in multiple advanced placement, AP, classes.  

AP classes will likely be the most affected by a change in class schedules as lesson plans will be immensely affected and students will have less in class time to ask for a teacher’s personal help.  

Junior Alex Davis believes the school board would choose to keep equal amount of in class time but implement longer periods. In this case, he believes, “AP classes would not be more difficult with only four days of lecture time but homework would probably be increased which ruins the point of three day weekends.”  

Schools would need much more information about this possible switch before they can be remotely prepared but other schools seem to have transitioned flawlessly. Across the United States, roughly 1,600 schools have already implemented four day weeks which shows this proposal is not impossible but would this really solve the teacher shortage problem the county is facing? Maybe all the teachers want is an increase in salary, not a radical solution that will probably involve the same amount of work as the current school schedule.