Sunday, August 14, 2005

Wasting Time in School

Inge Canon on Carnegie Units at the transcripts seminar :

"36 weeks x 5 sessions x 45-50 min each =135 -150 hours. School administrators then assume that this will generate another 65-150 hours of "outside" preparation. So a Carnegie Unit is assuming 200 hours of work."

Mrs. Canon went on to say that homeschools should, rightly, adjust this time requirement since the tutorial setting is so different from classroom instruction. She then read this study done on "Time-on-task" in public high schools. The author of the study was invited to do it, and surveyed close to 2000 high schools. Here are the results:

Gross School Year = 1080 hours

subtract 15% absenteeism=918 hours

subtract 40% of the day allocated to non-instructional activities (lunch, homeroom, class switching) = 551 hours

subtract 12% of class time for administration = 485 hours

subtract 25% for students being "off-task" (various reason, most teachers said they were being conservative with this figure) = 364

After 1080 hours in a typical high school year, the average high schooler is getting just 365 hours of actual instruction time! Amazing, isn't it?

And they wonder why students feel high school is a waste of time...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Won't get any arguments from me! LOL

So, an hour a day engaged in learning activities? I think my kids qualify for that, easily, without any input from me. Imagine how that jumps on the days we're more interactive. Yowza!