TRCC Moves to 4 Day Week

POPLAR BLUFF, AR (KAIT) -- The national average for gasoline is right at $4 a gallon and some businesses are making changes to help their employees.  Here in Region 8 there have been several companies who have already shortened their work weeks.  On June 2, 2008 Three Rivers Community College started their new summer schedule where students are now taking four day school weeks instead of five.

A test run of a four day school week was done last summer at TRCC, but with the gas prices up so high, they decided they had to do it again this year to help students save money on gas.

"We have students who travel an hour one way so by cutting out a day they are able to save one whole round trip a week of gas," said Executive Vice President and Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Larry Kimbrow.

TRCC is also offering more online classes and they've added more video conferencing classes for students who attend one of their five other centers.

To make it possible to have a four day school week, TRCC officials have had to make some changes to the class hours.

"We have forty-five contact hours required so by compressing it into four days we had to extend the classes  another twenty or thirty minutes," said Kimbrow.

While most students said the shorter weeks are helping them, not everyone agrees that it's a good idea.

Student Destiny Warren said the shorter weeks and longer classes are making the school work harder.

"We don't have enough time to get four to five chapters shoved in a week," said Warren.

They are looking at offering some of their fall Monday, Wednesday, Friday classes on Monday's and Wednesday's as well to offer students the option of shortening their school week.  They are also keeping the normal schedules in place too for students who don't want to have to shorten their classes.

The four day schedule is only fully in place through the end of the second summer semester which ends in August.