ERIC Number: ED442891
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 2000-Jun-7
12-Hour School Days? Why Governments Should Leave Afterschool Arrangements to Parents. Policy Analysis.
The move to lengthen school days with afterschool programs has support from Democrats and Republicans. Supporters of afterschool programs include child care professionals who believe young children need more supervision, educators who believe children need more academic instruction, and politicians who believe teens need more structured afterschool activities. Such beliefs reflect misunderstanding of important facts. Research indicates that only 2 percent of children aged 5-12 regularly care for themselves after school. Supply of afterschool programs far exceeds demand. Evidence does not support the contention that opening more afterschool programs will boost academic achievement or reduce delinquency. The Clinton administration's request to fund afterschool programs is only a small part of a plan to expand the public school's role. Given the widely acknowledged failure of many government schools to accomplish their primary duty (to educate students), the administration's proposal for expanding the schools' responsibilities is inappropriate. Instead of funding the expansion of government schools, state legislators should adopt universal tuition tax credits that would give parents full latitude to select their children's schools, including independent schools, with or without afterschool programs. Finally, Congress should cease funding afterschool programs. (Contains 94 notes). (SM)
Descriptors: After School Programs, Elementary Secondary Education, Extended School Day, Financial Support, Government School Relationship, Parent Responsibility, School Age Day Care, School Role
Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20001 ($6). Tel: 800-767-1241 (Toll Free); Fax: 202-842-3490; Web site: http://www.cato.org.
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Cato Inst., Washington, DC.