Atkins Public School will look a little different for the 2021-2022 school year. Seeking innovation for their students and staff, the APS Board of Education approved transitioning to a 4 day week for the upcoming school year at their regular scheduled board meeting on Monday, March 8, 2021. Students will maintain the same number of instructional minutes as a 5 day week, but will only attend school 4 days a week. Proposed times for the district are 7:40 am – 4:03 pm with the “off” day being either Monday. Red Devil Days, an enrichment opportunity for grades K-6th will be offered on Mondays for families that wish to participate. Red Devil Days will incorporate real world problem solving, social and emotional learning, career development, life skills, and financial literacy among other fun activities.

The decision did not come easily for the school board or administrators. Two rounds of surveys were distributed as well as a community meeting was held leading up to the decision. With the majority of stakeholders in favor of the change, the board voted to transition to the 4 day week beginning next year.

A 4 day week is gaining momentum across the nation as well as locally in Arkansas. Multiple school districts within the state have implemented a 4 day week model including: Kirby School District, East End School District, Johnson County Westside School District, Western Yell County School District and Norfork School District.

The 4 day week model has proven to provide multiple benefits such as increased student enrollment, improved student and staff attendance, decreased student discipline, increased staff recruitments and retention, increased student and staff morale as well as a savings among daily operation expenditures such as fuel, electricity and substitute costs.

Atkins Public Schools is excited to offer their students and staff this innovative and creative approach to education. If you are interested in becoming a Red Devil, please contact Lori Edgin, Incoming Superintendent at 479-641-7871 or visit the Atkins Public School Central Office for School Choice information by May 1st.