Let's Talk About Summer Vacation
In case you hadn't noticed, we no longer have an agrarian society. Johnny doesn't need to have the fertile months free to help in the fields anymore. So why do we still have summer vacations in the school year? Yes, the nostalgia for long hot days stretching endlessly is nice. But how many of the kids are swinging over lakes on old tires and drinking Country Time, or playing jacks in the sand by the side of the road? I'm betting that Kids Today® are either in day care or some other societal veal pen just marking time until the next life event. They're not picking strawberries or corn or whatever the farm kids picked 50 years ago. After these 8 weeks of leisure they'll go back to school where a teacher will have to refresh them, they'll have to relearn study habits and adjust their sleep schedules back to early-rise mode. Then they'll grow up to work in an office where they're expected to show up 350 days a year, regardless of the weather. And they'll probably sit in the cube next to mine and whine about how they have to work during the summer and that isn't fair and maybe they'll just become a teacher.
Is this what we've made out of our society? That some people actually become teachers so that they can continue to enjoy summer break? Forget the molding of young minds. I'm in it for the extended tanning time by the apartment complex's pool.
Since I don't have kids of my own it does seem kind of lopish for me to have an opinion about changing the school year, but I do. I've watched too many "kids" come out of school and into the workforce with absolutely no appetite for working from June to September. And why would they? They've spent their formative years being programmed to accept those months as extended holidays. A year-round school system offers families the same amount of together-time, but more evenly spaced. It's easier for teachers to stay on top of the material, because the kids retain it better. It creates fewer problems for working parents who have childcare issues. Above all it better prepares kids psychologically for their eventual adulthood.
So let's do it.