Spokane schools could see longer days as soon as this fall

Spokane schools could see longer days as soon as this fall

SPOKANE, Wash. - Washington state is requiring longer school days for the 2015-2016 school year, but Spokane Public Schools is considering making the change as soon as this fall.

The new schedule will mean up to an additional 30 minutes of school depending on the grade.

"The board mandated that the administration do it, the administration has been in this negotiation for that extended day," Kevin Morrison, director of community resources for Spokane Public Schools, said.

Morrison said part of the process is receiving feedback on whether or not the change should be implemented a year early.

"I think over a thousand responses and it's pretty close to 50-50," he said.

Spokane's school day is on the shorter side compared to others in the state and nation and the change would adjust that, adding 30 minutes to the elementary school day and six minutes to the high school and middle school day.

The district's hope is that more time for instruction would mean increased student achievement. However, some parents like Amber Rushing think otherwise, saying that's too much time for a nine-year-old to sit still.

"You can see they're running around out here and they're running hard and they need that I think," Rushing said.

Others like parent Stacey Swearingen said that starting a half-hour early will interfere with their schedule.

"For our family, it just doesn't work as well as the nine to three does for work schedules and things like that," Swearingen said.

Some parents, like Jason Allenan, won't even notice the change.

"Having it start a half-hour earlier is not that big of a deal we're already up and doing our morning routine," he said.

One mom -- Heather -- agreed that it could require some re-arranging, but added that's her job.

"As parents we work around our children and we make sure that our children are where they're suppose to be," she said.