Chui Pak-hei, 12, Henrietta Secondary School
No. If we only go to school four days a week, we won’t have time to cover all the subjects, and schools are likely to prioritise the difficult ones like maths. This means we’ll no longer be able to study more fun or creative subjects like PE, art, and music. Having a five-day week means we have more time to do fun things at school.
Lee Yuet-ching, 17, Precious Blood Secondary School
Yes, the school week should only be four days long. Nowadays, most students are under a tremendous amount of pressure to do well at school. If there were only four school days a week, students would have more time to relax and prepare for tests. As a result, their grades, and overall well-being, would improve. Surely that’s a situation that would make both parents and teachers happy, too.
Chan Yan-pok, 12, SKH Tsang Shiu Tim Secondary School
I don’t think it’s a good idea. If we reduce the school week without reducing the content we need to learn, the school day will become even more intense. The teaching pace will also be faster, and not all students will be able to keep up, especially those who are already struggling in class. We’ll all end up being more stressed.
Teresa Kwok, 14, South Island School
I don’t think so. The teaching schedule is already so tight. If the school week is reduced to four days, teachers won’t have time to cover all the topics, and students may not learn everything they need to know in time for their exams. What’s more, students are already used to going to school for five days a week. It doesn’t really make sense to change things and disrupt their routine.
Lee Cheuk-ling, 13, Fanling Rhenish Church Secondary School
No. Two rest days a week is already enough to relax, do homework, or spend time with family. If we had a three-day weekend, we would get into more of a “holiday” frame of mind and struggle to focus or be productive.
Lee Hauyin,13, SKH Tsang Shui Tim Secondary School
Yes! Students have such busy weeks and it isn’t good for them. They will be healthier, both physically and mentally, if they have a longer weekend to rest and recover. I’m sure a lot of students secretly wish for a longer weekend, so why not give it to them?
Chan Lok-yee, 12, SKH Tsang Shiu Tim Secondary School
No, because I don’t think people will ever be satisfied. If we reduce the school week from five days to four, students will want it reduced to three or even two. It will just become unreasonable. It's better to keep things as they are.
Clarice Chan Pui-wun, 12, SKH Tsang Shiu Tim Secondary School
I don’t think having a four-day week will work because adults still need to work five days a week, so younger students won’t have anyone to take care of them. Parents may have to fork out for expensive childcare, or older siblings will have to take care of the younger ones – not exactly a good way to relax.
Fung Man-yin, 14, Precious Blood Secondary School
Yes. If schools adopt a four-day week, students and teachers will have more free time to do what they like, such as participating in extracurricular activities, developing interests and spending time with their families. It also will reduce the financial costs of running schools. Lastly, it may improve overall student attendance. According to the report of The Melstone School District in Montana, over the course of a 2-year period on a four-day schedule, the student attendance has increased by 20 per cent. When students attend school more often and regularly, they are bound to learn more.
Wong Kai-lok, 12, Carmel Pak U Secondary School
I don’t think so. We have to study a lot of subjects at school, and we can’t fit it all into a four-day week. It would be really stressful. Students would still end up spending their time outside of school trying to catch up, so they may as well be at school where they have access to books and computers.
Sabrina Sun, 12, Maryknoll Convent School (Secondary Section)
No, we should not reduce the number of school days. Most schools already have problems covering the syllabus. If school week is shortened, teachers won’t have enough time to teach and the learning progress will be slowed down. The proponents may think that working for five days is too stressful for students, but we cannot cut the school week simply because of the heavy workload. What students will have to learn is to deal with stress and to manage time properly. Plus, it’s never going to be enough for students − very soon, four days of school would be too much and they may ask for three, and then two. It is never going to end.
Edited by Charlotte Ames-Ettridge
In our next Talking Points, we’ll discuss:
Should students be forced to do more physical exercise in school?
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