>First off, I am not against more time in school for >those that need it and can benefit by it. But it needs >to be optional. Why not bring back summer school? In >that model, a student could be told to attend if they >were struggling, or attend if they or their parents felt >it would help.
You sweet, naive man. What kids do you think are going to mainly populate summer school? You want to create a condition in which mainly black and brown children are sweating it out in summer classrooms while their white and Asian peers are off to the beach, to playing baseball, on their European vacations?
If summer school is mandatory only for children who need it, the government will be functionally discriminating between black and white children. (Does this sound preposterous? Look up "disparate impact".) If summer school is optional, what will happen if the parents whose children need summer school choose to not send their children to summer school?
Recall that the Education Mafia do not trust parents. They make a big deal of "parental involvement", with the clear implication that lack of achievement is not the fault of the schools but of the parents. If you have parents who are not engaged in their children's education in the first place, how are you going to depend on them to send their children to summer school? Especially if the child objects. Can you imagine a child wanting to hang out with his friends instead of sweating it out in a classroom? (Easily.)
Clearly, if extended school is going to happen, it will have to be mandatory for everyone. At this point in our socio-historical development, there is no other way.