Area school plans to implement ‘Flex Days’

Area school plans to implement ‘Flex Days’

PIGGOTT, Ark. (KAIT) - A Clay County school district is working to relieve stress on their teachers by giving them more time to work on preparing schoolwork for students.

Superintendent Barry DeHart said the school plans on implementing what is known as ‘Flex Days.’

Students will not be required to come to classes one day a week while teachers will work on their lessons.

Starting Oct. 30 through Christmas, Fridays will see quiet halls and busy teachers.

“We chose Friday because it would be easier for parents to go into the weekend. That was one reason. As the numbers continued to grow of the kids going virtual, we thought a full day would give us the opportunity,” he said.

Schoolwide, 33 percent of students are virtual. Half of that number comes from high school students.

For teachers, this means they’re teaching material in two different formats: in the classroom and online. DeHart said this work adds up.

“It’s a tremendous amount of work for our teachers and we’ve helped our students by going virtual. We’ve done everything to try to help and make our environment safe, our students feel safe. We need to help our teachers and that’s what we’re trying to do,” he said.

On these Fridays, if a student lacks needed supervision at home, they can still come to class.

“If you have an elementary student and you need your kids to come to school, you have that opportunity. Just put them on the bus and we’ll take care of those kids,” he said.

The bus routes will still run on these days and lunches will be made available to students.

In essence, when Flex Days begin, students will learn Monday-Thursday, with Friday being a tutoring day or catch-up day for students and teachers.

On Fridays, students will not learn any new material.

DeHart said the only thing the school lacks is the final stamp of approval from the Arkansas Department of Education on their Ready for Learning plan change to add their Flex Day.

He said he didn’t see the approval being a problem for the Piggott School District.

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