While so many things have changed in education over the last few generations, one thing that always remains the same is the countdown to summer vacation. No matter how long the days may seem during the last few weeks of school, keeping track of each remaining day on the school calendar can give hope to even the most exhausted students and teachers in class. The only exception, of course, is when you know that your warm summer days will be filled with daily trips to summer school.
There’s just something about going to school in the summer that makes it seem like a much bigger burden than at any other time of the year. And students aren’t the only ones getting inconvenienced by having to attend summer school to make up for what they missed.
Between dropping kids off at school, picking them up, and arranging before and aftercare for younger children, working parents have many different activities to coordinate. And adding the summer months to the nine months already on the school calendar can make it even harder for parents who work full-time.
Plus, summer school hours are typically shorter than they are during the school year, and many districts don’t provide before and aftercare in their buildings during the summer months, leaving parents scrambling to find child care and trying to arrange transportation two times per day.
And parents aren’t the only ones trying to make the summer school schedule work.
Educators who teach during the summer months face challenges of their own. From driving back and forth to working in older buildings that don’t have air conditioning, many teachers choose not to apply to summer school teaching positions.
Even though many teachers do need additional income during the summer months just to pay their bills, they can make significantly more at other seasonal jobs. And in those positions, they aren’t desperately trying to teach students who aren’t very motivated to learn.
But all is not lost when it comes to summer school in the future. There are many advantages for school districts that adopt a virtual summer school model.
By eliminating the need to travel back and forth, parents can instead focus on connecting their kids to their virtual classroom and making sure they complete their assignments. Plus, there would be much less time dedicated to summer school when they can access it from home making it a much more efficient process.
As far as teachers go, setting up a virtual classroom and teaching virtually would be a much bigger draw, leading to more teachers applying to open positions. Teaching summer school virtually would eliminate their commute, would allow them to differentiate lessons more efficiently, and it would also allow them to keep their own children at home instead of searching for summer daycare.
Virtual summer school is more efficient and effective for parents, students, and teachers. And the school districts that make the switch to virtual learning in the summer will enjoy its many benefits.