May 26, 2013 at 4:51 pm
FARMINGTON, Minn. (AP) School officials in some Minnesota districts are experimenting with shorter class schedules, on the theory that what matters in education is quality of instruction, not hours.
Superintendents at some Farmington Area Public Schools have given up two to five days of classroom instruction. Instead teachers use that time to meet one-on-one with students and collect information about their skills.
Conventional wisdom suggests that longer school hours translate into better student performance, but data don't necessarily back that up. Some states and countries with fewer teaching hours still outdo those that mandate more instruction hours.
Some parents in the Farmington district say they support the program. Others are wary, saying they'll want strict accounting of how well it's working.
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