Yesterday, we came across this article highlighting innovative approaches to the school day and year in Wyoming.

The Wyoming Tribune-Eagle, as a part of their Talking Education 2013 project, published an article describing the opportunity for some Wyoming schools to reinvent their school day and year ranging from longer school days to four day weeks to summer school programs.

One of the reasons this article was so exciting is that it shows that the movement is spreading across the country! When the National Center on Time & Learning published Mapping the Field in December 2012, the research showed that there were 36 states and the District of Columbia with expanded-time schools. With Wyoming’s addition, we know that there are at least 37 states! Here is a clip from the article explaining PODER Academy’s expanded school day:

Cheyenne’s public charter school, the PODER Academy, started the year with an 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. schedule for students.

“The research shows that when students have more time in the classroom they’re going to be more successful overall,” school founder and CEO Marcos Martinez said. “It gives us more time with the students and more time to get them to proficient and advanced levels.”The schedule also helps parents, he said, because it gives students a safe and educational environment while parents are at work.

Internal assessments and results on the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) tests have been showing student improvement, he added.
“Students are learning a whole lot, and parent feedback is good,” Martinez said.

We are happy to announce that after reading the newspaper article, we reached out to PODER Academy CEO and founder Marcos Martinez and he is now our newest TSC Signatory. It is exciting to see more and more students benefit from the opportunities that come with expanded-time. We look forward to staying in touch with PODER Academy and following what happens in other Wyoming schools. This is a movement that is just beginning!