The Strike to Save Summer

Summer vacation is a coveted period of time for students all over the world. Three months of vacation to play sports, hang out with friends, go on vacation, and relax. Should schools abolish summer break and have year-round classes? Well, of course they shouldn’t eliminate the 12 week break that nearly every student anxiously awaits to arrive throughout the entire course of the year! Without summer break, what is there for kids to be excited about? Adopting a year-round calendar would not only negatively affect the students, but the teachers, parents, and administration that run the school as well.

Taking this into account, schools should not abolish summer vacation because people’s minds need a break from productive activity (like school), year-round schools would impede students from participating in extended vacations, camps, sports, and other activities, and the cost to run a school year-round drastically increases the school districts expenses.

Everyone’s mind needs a break from productive activity, like school and/or work.

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Student’s minds need time to recuperate and just rest completely so they can be fresh and sharp when school starts again in late August/September. In the article “Why Your Brain Needs a Break,”Chapman states,“Summer vacation gives people’s minds an opportunity to go at a slower pace and be able to “reboot or recuperate” so therefore, their mind will be fresh and ready to go come next September.” (Psychology Today) Chapman points out that a traditional summer break refreshes students (and teachers for that matter) and that extended time off motivates students to perform better when they return to school in the fall.

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The absence of a true summer can be negative for all concerned. Tired, burnt out teachers can have a direct effect on their students. Having summers off has been a light at the end of the tunnel for teachers after an intense school year and they need a chance to recoup as well. When the mind is not focused on a certain thing, it’s actually able to absorb more information due to the wide variety of learning options provided.

The mind works more efficiently and opens student’s mind even more with the 3 month break summer offers. Also in the article “Why your brain Needs a Break” Chapman demonstrates, “Breakthrough thinking commonly occurs when people just let their mind freely imagine and wander, removing the context of their day-to-day grind in a different environment that will not pull them into constant distractions. This is because their mind opens up to so much stuff while not being forced to worry about school subjects that limit their mind potential.” (Psychology Today) Summer breaks are needed to give students downtime and their overworked minds a break. Thus giving them the ability and fortitude to excel in the most productive way during school months. A performance vs stress graph confirms that people’s minds need a break.

This graph shows that if they do not get enough time to recharge and relax, they will become overworked causing stress and other negative side effects ultimately resulting in a decline of their performance. People who are in favor of year-round schools argue that shortened summer breaks can help us retain information better and reduce “brain drain” when it comes to adjusting back to the schedule from being off but that has not been proven beyond a reasonable doubt. Paul Von Hipple discovered that regardless of the calendar configuration, students spend the same amount of time reviewing “forgotten” material during each 12 month learning cycle. (Deseret News) That means that regardless of coming off of a 12 week break or a 4 week break teachers will need to spend time reviewing forgotten information. Therefore, there is no benefit to year-round schooling. Since there are no conclusive results that support a reduced summer break will equal better retention, and there is no guarantee of improved academic achievement, the decision should be obvious not to have year-round school.

Having a summer break allows kids to do things outside of the classroom they couldn’t do during a year-round schedule. Summer breaks allow students to participate in activities such as extended vacations, camps, and sports. Just because a student isn’t in school, doesn’t mean that they aren’t learning. Camps can contribute to learning and socialization, while sports increase physical activity and usually have more intense training during the summer. Even though theses opportunities can be offered during the school year, the students would have homework to complete which takes away from the enjoyment of the activity. Extended summer vacations can provide unique learning opportunities you can’t get in a classroom. Taking that time away from kids means they could miss out on art, culture and special adventures. In the article “An Honest Day’s Work,” Lloyd shows that,’During summer break, kids are getting all sorts of experiences they wouldn’t get in school. Summer is a great supplement to what your child is getting in school. If they’re in year-round school your child will miss out on those experiences.’ (Great! Schools)

Many students who play sports or are involved in extracurricular activities during the school year don’t have the time to work but with a summer break they can get seasonal jobs. This would not only help the student gain work experience and be beneficial for their resume, but help out the many industries who are dependent on short-term employment. Also in the article “An Honest Day’s Work,” Coburn explains, “It’s good to have a combination of work experience and be exposed to different professions and work environments. A lot of students don’t have any idea what type of work environment they ultimately want. Summer jobs can help them to keep their eyes open to different professions and work environments.” (Great! Schools) Let’s not forget our teachers either. In 2016, a Texas State Teachers Association survey found that 49% of the 900 teachers asked had summertime jobs. Without summer breaks teachers wouldn’t have the opportunity to supplement their income if they chose to do so. With year-round school both students and teachers would miss out on all of these opportunities and much more.

Perhaps the most attention getting reason not to abolish summer vacation is because of cost. Having students on school grounds throughout the entire year increases utility expenses and can drive up the cost of maintaining and repairing school buildings.This is especially true for schools in areas with hot summers.These schools may need to add weatherproofing, such as sun shades, and will need to run their air-conditioning year-round. In the article, “Year Round Schooling” Lynch proves that “The summer months are typically the highest ones for energy consumption. In fact, the average electricity bill for homeowners in the summer months goes up 4 to 8 percent. Having empty classrooms in the summer months means less money going out to air conditioning and prevents other warm-weather costs from hitting school utility budgets.”(Education Week) Lynch explains that the summer time is when the most energy is being used, stating a lot more electricity and air conditioning would be required, thus skyrocketing the electricity bills tremendously.

According to the National Climatic Data Center, it’s more than 300 times more expensive to cool schools in August than October and March (when year-round schools are closed for half the month). Year-round schooling also does not leave the school empty for performing any extensive repairs. Repairs would be made while students and teachers are in school, causing disruption. The continuous use of school for 12 months out of the year, instead of 9, can cause additional wear and tear, requiring repairs more frequently. In addition to an increase in utility and maintenance expenses there is also the issue of transportation. Also in the article “Year Round Schooling,” Lynch explains“Year-round schooling will also require the school buses and/or any other ways of transportation getting to school to be used more often during the summer, which since those transportation systems cost money, using them longer would cost even more money. ” (Education Week). Basically, what Lynch is saying is that if schools are year-round, the transportation systems will demand more money, putting a further burden on the school budget. According to the superintendent of the Salt Lake City School District, it costs $128,000 more a year just in busing to keep schools operating under the year-round calendar. With all that said, year-round school would increase the budget for schools and the districts running them.

In conclusion, year-round school is a bad idea for many reasons. People’s minds need long breaks to rest and recuperate from constant use. A traditional summer break has been shown to refresh students and teachers allowing their brains to recuperate and be ready to work when the new school year starts. Not all education has to come from within a classroom.Year-round schools would impede students from participating in extended vacations, camps, sports, and other activities where they would be able exposed to a variety of different learning experiences. Finally, the cost to run a school year-round drastically increases the school districts expenses. Not many people like to spend more money than needed and maintaining a year-round school would increase the budget in turn not making taxpayers very happy. These factors negatively affect the students, parents, teachers, and school districts. People may think that year-round classes are helpful to student learning, but there is no solid proof to agree with that. So why take away the one time of the year that kids look forward to the most? Let the kids be kids while they can.

Works Cited

  1. Chapman. “Why Your Mind Needs a Break.” Psychology Today, Sussex Publishers, www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/make-your-brain-smarter/201406/why-your-mind-needs-break.
  2. Chesney. “10 Reasons You Need a Summer Vacation.” The Odyssey Online, 28 Aug. 2017, www.theodysseyonline.com/10-reasons-you-need-summer-vacation.
  3. GreatSchools Staff, “An honest day’s work: summer jobs for teens.”
  4. Greatschools.org, 24 June 2018,
  5. https://www.greatschools.org/gk/articles/summer-jobs-for-youth/
  6. Lynch, Matthew. “Year-Round Schooling: How It Affects the Economy.” Education Week – Education Futures: Emerging Trends in K-12, 18 Feb. 2018, www.edweek.org/edweek/education_futures/2013/11/year-round_schooling_how_it_affects_the_economy.html.
  7. Smith, Mary. “7 Health Benefits of Vacations | Don’t Skimp out on Summer Vacation.” The Village Journal, 2 June 2017, www.deseretnews.com/article/700105078/Year-round-schools-dont-work-so-districts-should-abandon-the-idea.html.
  8. Figliolino, Jonathan. “The Science of Stress Management: Your Brain on Cortisol.” I Done This Blog, 20 Mar. 2017,
  9. www.blog.idonethis.com/science-stress-management-brain-cortisol

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The Strike to Save Summer. (2021, Dec 28). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/the-strike-to-save-summer-essay

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