As a Latino, as the father of a third-grader attending a Los Angeles school, and as a bilingual kindergarten teacher working for the Los Angeles Unified School District, I have many reasons for opposing year-round schools. Under present circumstances, implementing year-round schools districtwide would institutionalize inferior education, and perpetuate inequality for minority students.
Test scores already indicate that the Los Angeles schools have much catching up to do. For minorities, the statistics are even more depressing. Fifty-two percent of Latinos never even make to 12th grade. Placing the schools on year-round is one option that might alleviate the housing problem, but at what cost academically? If educational environment has anything to do with academic performance, and research says that it does, with multi-track year-round schools we can expect even lower performances.
The 93 Latino schools that were the year-round guinea pigs five years ago have not shown any marked academic improvement. And their scores were already low.
When the Board of Education held hearings in December, black, Latino and Asian parents who have children in these schools voiced their opposition to year-round school. It's fair to assume that these parents who have taken time out to attend evening board meetings are the most involved and most knowledgeable of the situation at their particular schools.