Unlimited Access. Try it Today! Your First 10 Days Always $0.99

Readers Respond

News Opinion Readers Respond

Invest in libraries, not a longer school day

Three schools in Baltimore are lengthening the school day based on the "success" of an expanded instruction program in New York ("Three city schools to extend day by three hours," Jan 1).

What success? According to The Sun, New York's overtime students gained 2.2 percentage points in English Language Arts in three years, more than the city average of 1.5 points.

Please do the math. That's a .7 percentage point difference over three years, about one quarter of a percentage point each year.

We can get much bigger gains with a lot less work, with an approach that children will like a lot better than staying in school longer: Invest in libraries and librarians. Studies show that children who do not do well on reading tests often have little access to books, and studies also show that increasing access to books through libraries increases reading as well as reading achievement.

Just reading one extra book for pleasure each year will produce a larger gain in Language Arts than overtime schooling.

Stephen Krashen, Los Angeles

The writer is professor emeritus at the University of Southern California.

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Police must stop bullying suspects
    Police must stop bullying suspects

    The most recent issues involving Baltimore City Police and the handling of suspects only reinforces the fact that the current system regarding handling of suspects must be scuttled and reconfigured ("Protests intensify over Gray's death," April 22).

  • Going soft on drugs
    Going soft on drugs

    To your editorial, "Schmoke's vindication" (April 17), regarding how former Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke's ideas about drug addiction are now mainstream, dare I add a sparse, "Congratulations?"

  • Unanswered questions surround Gray's death
    Unanswered questions surround Gray's death

    Columnist Dan Rodricks asked some good questions about what happened to Freddie Gray ("Video of Gray arrest begs faster answers to troubling questions," April 20).

  • Baltimore County's financial failure
    Baltimore County's financial failure

    The Sun editorial, "The McDonald's trap" (April 19), asked whether Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz is providing the services that county residents desire. The editorial opens the door to investigating what Baltimore County residents don't get because county revenue has not kept pace with...

  • Trade bill benefits Israel, not the U.S.
    Trade bill benefits Israel, not the U.S.

    I agree with commentator Yousef Munayyer's concerns about the bill sponsored by Sen. Ben Cardin that would require U.S. trade officials to make defending Israel from boycotts part of their negotiating strategy ("Cardin, don't tie U.S. hands for Israel," April 21).

  • Arab leaders don't want peace with Israel
    Arab leaders don't want peace with Israel

    Regarding commentator Yousef Munayyer's piece on the movement to boycott Israel ("Cardin, don't tie U.S. hands for Israel," April 21), the Palestinians danced in the streets on 9/11.

Comments
Loading

41°