Why a Flex Day Would be Beneficial

Karen Jean, Writer

At the beginning of this school year, Wake County decided it would follow Plan C for reopening schools. This would mean that all students would be doing online learning. It was a difficult decision, but Wake County officials felt this was in the best interest for the students. Problems with the online system have shown up, some being that students feel they have too much screen time and that teachers and students are getting overloads of work. Possible solutions are being discussed, but one that should be looked at more closely is having a flex day. 

 

A flex day in this context means that there would be a day during the week where students and teachers would not need to attend live classes and no new material would be given. This idea is currently underrated but has been proven to work according to the schools that have implemented it like Cary Academy. This is due to the fact that it can offer many benefits for both teachers and students. Here below, are some of the many reasons why schools should implement a flex day.

 

1- Gives teachers additional time to catch up on their grading

 Being a teacher is not as easy as most might think. Not only do they have to take time to plan out their classes and materials for each day, but they have to grade a lot of assignments. Just think about it, teachers usually have three class periods and each class can have anywhere from 20 to 40 students. That would mean that a teacher would have to grade 60 to 120 assignments a day. This can overload a person, which is why a flex day would be useful. Teachers could use this to have additional time to catch up with all the work they might be behind on. 

 

2- Gives students more time to catch up with their assignments

With online classes, it has made it so students not only have to complete their classwork assignments on their own but also additional homework for each class. Tests and quizzes have lost value due to how cheating is more prone to occur with it being online. This has made it so teachers rely more on long assignments for students to complete. Students can have anywhere from 4 to 8 classes in a semester equaling to 4 to 8 assignments a day! A day where students don’t get anything new to complete would help release some of their stress and help them advance on their work.   

 

3-Provides more hours of sleep 

Students and teachers still have to attend classes at a regular bell schedule, meaning beginning classes anywhere from 7 to 9 am depending on the school. With all the workload especially for high schoolers, many do not end up going to sleep until very late at night. This ends up making it so that many students and teachers end up being sleep deprived. With a flex day, students and teachers do not have to wake up early, therefore they can catch more sleep and regain more energy, overall bettering their health.   

4- Allows for less screen time

As previously mentioned, too much screen time seems to be a prominent problem in the lives of students right now. Not only do they have to sit hours staring at a screen during live teaching but also have to do assignments and homework through electronic devices. When there is a day where students do not have to attend live classes or even do additional work, it gives them a break and can reduce the chances of developing screen induced migraines.

 

 5- Provides for enrichment opportunities

Some students enjoy learning and can sometimes feel like the material given does not challenge them enough. A flex day can work in their favor, as they can ask teachers for additional material in their subject of interest. Sometimes it is hard for teachers to create assignments that can fit all their students’ needs, so this day would allow for students to become more independent and focus on whatever they are passionate about.

  

Currently most of the schools that are implementing a flex day are private schools like Cary Academy. Hopefully, Wake County officials can begin to realize how effective this strategy can be and could maybe in the near future follow the private school’s steps and implement it more into public schools like Green Hope High School.