Extending Thanksgiving Break is Worth it

Jane Zou, Staff Writer

Students will leave for Thanksgiving break from Nov. 22-26 for five days without homework or early morning classes. These five days are not enough for families to take their well-deserved vacations or to relish each other’s company. IUSD should extend Thanksgiving break in the future to seven days, starting on the preceding Monday.

Extending Thanksgiving break increases the duration families have together that school and work would otherwise prohibit. For parents working during the first two days, this allows students to exercise their independence, using their own resources to plan the week ahead or to jumpstart their coursework. Whether it is a road trip across the world or a vacation at home, the current five days result in cropped vacation plans before school drags students back.

Some argue that lengthening Thanksgiving break takes out a couple of summer vacation days; but, a week-long fall break is more relaxing than a slightly shorter summer vacation.

“I don’t mind taking an extra week out of my summertime because summer is too long anyway,” freshman Rachel Yang said.

According to the GW Hatchet, which is the second-longest continuously published newspaper in Washington D.C., families use Tuesday to travel at more frugal fares, which would be more expensive when flying on Wednesday before Thanksgiving. Even when students leave school early the two days before, many teachers use these days to teach a lesson or administer a test. Consequently, students either have to cram this coursework earlier or spend their vacation stressing over the work they have to make up afterward.

If Thanksgiving break is a full week starting on Monday, families would have more time to bond by preparing the Thanksgiving feast and spending quality time with each other.

After a few days away from school, each proceeding day normalizes rest. Some miss the routine that school enforces on students’ schedules.

Yet, an extra two days replace the inconsistent two-day week that intrudes on school schedules. Instead, students can use these two days for planning the week ahead.

“I need more time to sleep. I do a lot of activities outside of school, so those will keep me occupied anyway,” freshman Kai Wong said.

Longer breaks that are free from school work promote higher work quality afterward. According to The Atlantic, taking longer breaks results in an increased motivation toward long-term goals and an improved mental health state.

Although there could be coursework over break, students can use the extra two days to complete this work before the holiday celebrations.

Thanksgiving break needs to be extended to a week for students to enjoy their time off from school. Instead of arguing that students cannot affect the schedule, speak up to IUSD members that students need the extra two days.