A number of school districts throughout the nation have changed their delivery method of a five-day school week to a four-day school week. Between 2009 and 2015, 27 Idaho school districts transitioned to a four-day school week, bringing the total number of school districts on a four-day week to 44 by 2015. This number increased to 45 by 2018. As school districts have become more comfortable with the four-day week schedule, school employees and constituents alike have increased satisfaction. A four-day school week results in about 20% fewer days of student and teacher contact days. This leads to a concern of how a four-day school week impacts academic performance. The purpose of this quantitative research study was to look at student achievement scores, specifically in Idaho rural public schools. The research compared standardized test scores of rural school districts on the four-day school week to the same test scores of rural school districts on the five-day school week. Additionally, sub populations with similar demographics were analyzed. These demographics included economically disadvantaged (free and reduced lunch percentages) and the percentage of Hispanics/Latinos. School districts that had an economically disadvantaged population of at least 45% were also analyzed. Five years of historical standardized test scores were gathered from the Idaho Department of Education beginning with the 2014-2015 school year and ending with the 2018-2019 school year. The standardized test scores that were analyzed included the Idaho Reading Indicator (IRI) and the Idaho Standards Achievement Test (ISAT). While results indicate that school districts on a five-day school week consistently had a higher percentage of proficient/advanced students on standardized tests when compared to four-day week school districts, there was no statistically significant impact (p≥.05) on the academic performance, as determined by the previously mentioned standardized metrics. Only one year (instead of five years) of the Hispanic/Latino sub population was able to be compared because of the significant redactions that took place in order to be compliant with privacy laws.
|Commitee:||Taylor, Barbara, Moore, Wendy|
|School:||Northwest Nazarene University|
|School Location:||United States -- Idaho|
|Source:||MAI 81/12(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Education, Educational tests & measurements|
|Keywords:||Academic achievement, Four day school week, Idaho rural school|
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