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The student news site of Colonia High School

The Declaration

The student news site of Colonia High School

The Declaration

NJ Governor proposes extending school day and school year

Photo Credit: Stephanie Polonis
Having students be in school during July and August

The Governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie, proposed a new idea for students of New Jersey on January 14, 2014; the idea calls for longer school days and shorter vacations. Chris Christie said, “This is a key to improve student outcomes, and boost our competitiveness.” Chris Christie thinks children need more time in school, some of them to catch up, and some of them to excel more.

Mr. William Leahy, Colonia High School’s Union Representative and a Woodshop teacher said, “I am for this new proposal. Extending the school year would take time away from spending time with my family but extending the school days wouldn’t. I have been working for 34 years and I think now is the time to have this very important conversation about extending school. I think it will take about a year for this to take place because they will have to do some researching. Teachers will probably get paid more because if you increase the work load then you should increase the pay of the work.”

The NJEA (New Jersey Education Association) hopes that an extensive 3 year long pilot is done before this new plan is implemented. Cost will be a major factor since this is why New Jersey hasn’t changed the required 180 school days to a longer period of time. In order for this proposal to go into effect, the pilot would have to prove that longer school days and a longer school year would increase student learning.

“Schools will probably get more state funding but our state is in a crisis. I just recently read an article about how New Jersey is still going through recession because the government overspent their money this year. If the state is going to be funding more school time, they should find a new way of funding instead of taking the money from property taxes. I have not heard much about when they will vote on this proposal but it should probably happen in June or November. If they are going to vote on this proposal they should do a public vote on this. They should do a public vote on this because then everyone in the state can have a say in this. This can be beneficial. Education is a life, long, learning. People learn something every day. If you expose this to children it can make society better,” explained Leahy.

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The students of Colonia High School a have different views on Christie’s new proposal than the adults who support this idea. 4 out of 50 students that attend Colonia High school said they liked the new proposal. 46 out of 50 students said that they didn’t like the idea of longer school days and longer school years.

Rabeya Hussaini, a current sophomore at Colonia High School, thinks, “I don’t like it at all because I think students should have a life outside of school. How are we going to discover what our calling is if we are stuck in school doing work?  This will take a lot of time away from spending time with my family because my parents work a lot. If school days are extended then we won’t have enough time to do our homework and we already don’t have enough time to do it.

Students also worry that longer school days won’t leave much time for clubs, sports, and work.


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About the Contributors
Amardeep Kaur
Amardeep Kaur, Spring Reporter
Amardeep Kaur was born on February 19, 1999 in Jackson Heights Queens, New York. She moved to Carteret, New Jersey in 2004. She lived there until 2013 and then she moved to Colonia. She is now currently a freshman at Colonia High School. Kaur loves reading books, watching movies, playing soccer, and eating. Her favorite foods are pizza, pasta, nachos, tacos, and cheese sticks. She is a very shy, loving, caring, sarcastic, and funny girl. Her favorite TV shows are The Carrie Diaries, The Vampire Diaries, Awkward, Reign, Pretty Little Liars, Star Crossed, The Tomorrow People, and Hart of Dixie.
Stephanie Polonis
Stephanie Polonis, Reporter & Editor
Stephanie Polonis is a senior at Colonia High School.  She loves writing in school and on her free time. Her favorite hobbies are dancing, and hanging out with her boyfriend.  Polonis’s plan when she grows up is to become a Cosmetologist.

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The student news site of Colonia High School
NJ Governor proposes extending school day and school year