It's summertime and young kids everywhere are enjoying fun and vacations in the sun.
All young children who are not attending one of the 56 elementary schools in Utah on the year-round school track, that is.Three tracks of students still are in session at Mountain Shadows Elementary School, Jordan District. Janeen Allen's second-grade class is on the D track and is looking forward to vacation starting June 29. The students get July off with all the other tracks and also receive an August break.
Allen's students had mixed reactions when asked how they liked being in school while older brothers and sisters enjoy traditional summer vacation.
"Sometimes I feel like I'm the only one who goes to school," said Ryan Openshaw. Openshaw's older sister attends a local middle school and already is enjoying her summer break.
Hanao Fox said, "It's sort of fun. My sister (who is already out of school) has no one to play with. We get to do a lot of fun things at school."
Jeremy Budd also likes summer school, but for very different reasons. He said, "I like going because then he (an older brother who attends middle school) can't bug me because I'm in school; that's what I like about it. And school is about the same even if it is hot outside."
Another student did not share his friends' positive opinions. Jacob White said, "I hate it, I hate school and I want to be outside."
Allen said she grew up attending a traditional school and finds the year-round system very different. The only drawback she sees is that children begin getting excited toward the end of May.
"The breaks (in a year-round school) are good for the teacher and kids," Allen said. "It allows us to rejuvenate, and the kids retain learning longer."
Principal Calvin Newbold has been at Mountain Shadow's since it opened as a year-round school two years ago. He has been a principal at year-round schools for five years. He said he felt the year-round program was working well, especially as a good solution to overcrowding.
"The teachers love it and come back enthused and rested from breaks," Newbold said. "The kids do, too."