Baton Rouge, LA (KPEL News) - Ten school districts in the state of Louisiana have implemented 4-day school weeks. A few of them have operated on that schedule for more than a dozen years. Students at more than 100 schools in the Boot State have either Monday or Friday off each week, with the exception of a few at the beginning or end of the year. Most recently, the Jeff Davis Parish School Board decided not to switch their schedule, despite response from students, teachers, and stakeholders who favored the 4-day week.

Franklinton Senator Beth Mizell has authored a bill filed in the regular Legislative Session that would mandate a 5-day school week.

Cash-strapped school districts in Louisiana have opted for the shorter week over the years for at least two reasons:

  • Cost savings- While the savings isn't astronomical, every little bit helps. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, the maximum possible cost savings for districts nationally is just over 5%, with the average between .4% and 2.5%.
  • Recruitment and retention- Money isn't the only thing in short supply, especially in the rural areas of Louisiana. The state is experiencing a significant shortage of educators, and an abbreviated week provides an attractive tool for teachers.

The shorter week model adopted by these school districts doesn't mean less time spent in the classroom. Students still spend, as required by Louisiana law, 63,720 minutes learning.

The following Louisiana school districts are currently operating on a 4-day hybrid schedule:

Read More: Louisiana School Board to Vote on 4-Day Week for 2024-25 Year

The schedule has worked well in the 5th Ward of Acadia Parish for more than 20 years. Schools in Midland, Morse, Estherwood, and Mermentau. All of those schools received an A or a B on the state "report card." The school board voted to implement the 4-day per week schedule in 2023 and revisit the plan in 2025.

Cameron Parish's superintendent Charley Lemons told KPLC in Lake Charles that he sent a letter of opposition to to the bill to their delegation. Cameron Parish received an A on their state "report card," and he believes the decision should be left in the hands of the local districts.

LaSalle Parish superintendent Jonathan Garrett echoes those sentiments, commenting to KNOE that teacher attendance has increased and there have been fewer disciplinary incidents.

Comments in a private Facebook group thread were overwhelmingly in favor by parents and teachers who live in parishes where they follow the 4-day model.

Proponents of the bill have said children should be in school 5 days a week and a shorter week burdens parents who work.

Senator Mizell's bill has been filed and referred to the Senate Education committee.

A+: These Are the Best Public High Schools in Louisiana

Stacker compiled a list of the best public high schools in Louisiana using 2023 rankings from Niche.

Gallery Credit: Stacker

Weird & Interesting Scholarships For Students

There are scholarships out there for lots of different things. Here are some fun ones that you may have never heard of before.

Gallery Credit: Mary-Katherine Maddox