The Ozark Mountain School District is joining a growing list of those shifting to a four-day week. The district comprises the K-12 campuses of Bruno-Pyatt, St. Joe and Western Grove.
KNWA is reporting the district has approved dropping Mondays from its schedule. Ozark Mountain will join the Norfork and Kirby school districts with four-day weeks for the 2020-2021 school year.
Ozark Mountain’s Superintendent Kerry Saylors says the district chose Mondays instead of Fridays to drop from the five-day week because it’s easier to schedule appointments and basketball games are usually on Tuesdays and Fridays.
District officials have bounced around the idea of a shorter school week for a while. Next school year, they’ll give it a shot.
Saylors says, “The last two years the district has lost 40 students. And so we started looking at ways to stop that trend.”
Saylors says he hopes the switch will not only attract and retain students, but teachers as well.
He says, “We have a tendency to lose teachers to surrounding school districts. We’re hopeful the four-day week might help us keep some of those teachers that possibly would have left. And also when we have open positions, hopefully this will improve our applicant pool.”
School days and classes will be longer, but there’s still a big void for parents to fill on Mondays.
The district is working to solve that problem, hoping churches offer safe spaces and high schoolers pick up babysitting.
The superintendent says the district is still sorting out when practices will be held for sports teams with the four-day school weeks.
In the Missouri Lakes Region, Bradleyville and Crane went to four day weeks in 2017 with Galena starting their four day week in 2018 and Spokane doing so this school year. The Lutie School District in Theodosia is scheduled to make the transition in August. Also, the Forsyth School District is looking into the possibility of a four day week in the future.