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Five States To Reimagine the School Day, Increase Classroom Time by 300 Hours

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“This is not just about adding time and doing more of the same,” said Luis Ubinas, president of the Ford Foundation. “It’s about creating a learning day that suits the needs of our children, the realities of working parents, and the commitment of our teachers. It’s a total school makeover.”

Five states—Colorado, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, and Tennessee—will participate in a pilot initiative to extend teaching time by 300 hours over the school year under a $3 million collaborative with the Ford Foundation and the National Center on Time and Learning. Dubbed the Time for Innovative Matters in Education (TIME) collaborative, the effort will give select public schools in the five participating states the time, funds, and opportunity to re-envision a school day that meets the needs of twenty-first-century students, parents, and communities.

“This is not just about adding time and doing more of the same,” said Luis Ubinas, president of the Ford Foundation. “It’s about creating a learning day that suits the needs of our children, the realities of working parents, and the commitment of our teachers. It’s a total school makeover.”

The extended hours are intended to allow for more personalized teaching that ensures no students are left behind. Participating schools will have the freedom to design their programs in ways that suit the needs of their students and staff, including increasing collaboration among teachers; providing increased opportunities in the arts; and generally promoting a culture of higher achievement. Schools are required to engage in a year-long planning process that will involve community members, parents, and local businesses to maximize the potential of TIME.

The goals of the collaborative are profound: narrow and close achievement gaps and prepare students for the twenty-first-century global workplace, in which they will need skills that go beyond textbooks, including technology aptitude, cultural intelligence, and complex problem-solving skills. Participating in the effort are nearly 20,000 students across these eleven school districts: Denver, Boulder Valley, Jefferson County, and Adams 50 in Colorado; East Hartford, Meriden, and New London in Connecticut; Fall River and Lawrence in Massachusetts; Rochester, New York; and Achievement School District (Memphis) and Metro Nashville in Tennessee. Learn more about TIME at http://www.timeandlearning.org/time-collaborative.

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