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Could You Handle an 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. School Day?

South Chicago-area residents have two educational success stories that could restore hope in struggling school districts.

Over the past four years, students in the first graduating class of Southland College Prep Charter High School spent five days a week from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. preparing for the next phase of their lives.

Selected by lottery, Southland College Prep students hail from the south suburban cities of Country Club Hills, Flossmoor, Hazel Crest, Homewood, Matteson, Olympia Fields, Park Forest, Richton Park and Tinley Park.

Though it's the only charter high school in Chicago's suburbs, May's commencement ceremony unveiled some superb success stories.

Among noteworthy achievements, the total amount of scholarship money racked up is quite impressive. And check out the universities some of these standout students will be attending.

On the city's troubled South Side, one school in West Englewood had its own success story, proving to be a beacon of opportunity and pride amid relentless gang violence and severe educational barriers.
This article appears on all Patch Chicago sites. The views expressed in this post are those of Reboot Illinois and do not reflect those of Patch or its editors.

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Kent Frederick June 27, 2014 at 03:02 PM
rt 53 rider: Actually, I have two degrees. Of course, I know how much time a college student spends preparing for class. But frankly, the ratio between class time and study time in college isn't that much different than for high school kids, assuming the high school students are in a college prep track. If you have kids getting out of school at 3 and not getting homework done until 9pm or later, what happens if the school day starts 30-45 minutes earlier and ends two hours later? Do we want kids staying up until 11pm or midnight and trying to survive on 6 or 7 hours of sleep? At least in college, you can choose not to take classes that start at 8am.
Carol S. Kohn June 28, 2014 at 12:42 PM
After my late Dad had graduated from Chicago State University in December of 1965 with his bachelor's degree in Education (having worked in the electronics industry from when I was a baby until December of 1964 when he quit that job to take his senior year in college. He then taught at Lindbloom in math and Electric Shop as a sub. Then, after he'd taken the written and verbal testing sometime in the spring of 1966 for the Chicago Publc Schools to become a regular teacher, he was given (orally) a list of schools where he could teach about Electronics and Lane Tech was one of the schools on it; he decided to go with Lane since our family (at that time) had been living in Evanston and it would be easier to get to Lane via public transportation as it was also before he'd purchased a car for himself since my Mom needed the family car to get to her own school in the Chicago Public Schools which was the Daniel Boone Elemenatry. In Augut of 1967, our family moved to Skokie and then thebBoth of the retired in June of 1985 with Dad having taught for 2 decade and Mom for 32 years in the Chicaago Public Schools
mcf June 28, 2014 at 05:20 PM
This Seems To Be More Of A Babysitting Situation For Parents Who Work Outside The House! Dont Have Kids If You Cant Stay Home And Raise Them. That's Not The Schools Responsiblity! 8:30 To 3:00.
Willie Wilmette June 29, 2014 at 07:36 AM
I would have no objection to having teachers in school 8 hours per day (full-time), but if you want students to learn & retain more, adding more school days per year would be much more effective.
Laura June 29, 2014 at 11:33 PM
I wish I understood why there is so much teacher hostility in our community. This was an article about the "idea" of an extended day and it turned into teacher bashing. Yes, I am a teacher. Yes, I have a decent salary to do so but I work very hard at making sure my kids are getting what they need. If I was told my day was to go to 5:00, it would make zero difference since that is my day everyday now. So many people put us down in these cowardless comment posts. Are we really that bad as teachers that you want us to make less? How would that fix anything? None of us went into teaching to be well off....none of us! We do it because we love it! 8 to 5 would make no difference to the extent of our passion for what we do. We just want the respect deserves as well educated and hard working professionals.

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