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The Advantages & Disadvantages of Double Shift Schools

by Katherine Bradley

There are several advantages and disadvantages to double shift schooling. Double shift schooling refers to a format of operation in which students are educated in multiple shifts. The main advantage for the implementation of a double shift schooling format is to curb the skyrocketing costs associated with operating an educational system. Twice as many students can be educated in any one facility if students attend in shifts. However, some disadvantages exist.

Advantage: Reduction in Construction

One of the main reasons that double shift schooling is implemented is due to a shortage of school buildings relative to the number of students to be educated. In essence, double shift schools run multiple schools out of one building, thereby reducing the need for extra schools. For example, if there are 1,500 students to educate, but room for only 800, educating students in two sessions of 750 would prevent overcrowding.

Advantage: Pooling Resources

Per-student funding for educational resources may be maximized in the double shift format. Double shift schools can pool all resources allocated students that might ordinarily attend two or more schools. Therefore, the double shift school has access to at least twice the resources intended for a traditional school. The enhancement of technology can be significant in terms of hardware and software. This means that school technology and library resources may be enhanced.

Disadvantage: Greater Wear and Tear on Facilities

In a double shift system, schools are apt to sustain twice the wear and tear on facilities in the same period of time as a traditional school would. Additionally, those resources that may be maximized as a result of the double shift will also suffer the effects of extensive use. There is a greater cost of repair and maintenance of facilities and buses due to extensive use.

Disadvantage: Potential Inferior Education

If there is a shortage of teachers, the double shift school may present yet another disadvantage. Some double shift schools may have teachers who teach two shifts for greater pay. It's possible that the quality of instruction may suffer for second shift students, due to teacher fatigue or burn out. Additionally, the shorter day may lessen the number of hours of academic exposure and totally eradicate extracurricular programs.

About the Author

Katherine Bradley began writing in 2006. Her education and leadership articles have been published on Education.com, Montessori Leadership Online and the Georgia Educational Researcher. Bradley completed a Ph.D. in educational leadership from Mercer University in 2009.

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