Wednesday, January 31, 2018

AV#175 - CareerWise Colorado, apprenticeships, and Gov. Hickenlooper

#5. The business of education (is education)

“Business can play a critical role in education that goes far beyond simply advising educators.  By extending the classroom into our places of business, we can become producers, not just consumers, of the education system.” Noel Ginsburg, CEO and Chair of CareerWise Colorado[i] [Bold throughout is mine.]

“People are waking up to the situation that our education system is not aligned to the outcomes we want for our kids and our businesses and our communities,” Noel Ginsburg, 5280 Magazine[ii]

A letter from a former teacher
Dear Business Community:  Educators are your allies (pp. 4-5)
What outcomes does business want for our kids?  Should schools let business determine the outcomes? What if Colorado educators have already set a rigorous goal for students: to meet our Academic Standards[iii]?

CareerWise Colorado is the largest initiative to expand apprenticeships in the state.  It has the full-throated support of Gov. Hickenlooper, is led by gubernatorial candidate Noel Ginsburg, and has the backing of many business leaders. I believe it is based on a flawed idea—that training equates to education. As currently structured I do not see how CareerWise is aligned with our current goals for high school students—to graduate, as the preferred phrase these days goes, “college and career ready.” How can it be, when it reaches down to 10th graders (too early) and redesigns their final two years of high school?  Juniors will apprentice 16 hours a week, missing two days of schools.  Seniors will be at the job 20 hours or more and miss up to three days of school. 

Hickenlooper and Ginsburg speak of a goal of 20,000 high school students a year taking part in apprenticeships within a decade.[iv]  Unlikely, and as I will argue, un(career)wise. My guess is that CareerWise can provide a meaningful option … for a few hundred students each year.  I do not see how it will ensure we provide teenagers the public education they deserve.  While I do not believe it was not designed to lower our academic expectations for these student apprentices, I believe that will be the result.

Gov. Hickenlooper speaks of this initiative as his chief legacy for education (see Addendum A).  In his past two State of the State addresses he has doubled down on “training for jobs” as his top priority (see Addendum B).  How unfortunate he has not followed his three predecessors in tackling issues that pertain to teaching and learning (see Letter to Business Community).  Ginsburg believes CareerWise can “change education as we know it in this state.”  I hope not.  These are not educators speaking. 

What do I see as the basic flaws?   I will focus on what the Governor and CareerWise tell us.  
(Several quotes here come from the website for CareerWise:
1.       “CareerWise was envisioned by its founder and CEO Noel Ginsburg and Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper following a 2015 trip to Switzerland to learn about its youth apprenticeship system. In 2016, the organization was created as a public-private partnership, and a few short months later it launched its first cohort of modern youth apprentices.”[v]  
Have Hickenlooper and Ginsburg thought deeply about the impact on the education these high school students will get?  Both have indicated the program is especially geared for those students not likely to get a 4-year degree (Hickenlooper[vi], Ginsburg[vii]). I believe it lowers the academic expectations for these students—putting them on a career path, which has its short-term benefits, but one that does not expect them to get a full high school education. No wonder fewer schools and students jumped on board this first year than the Governor has claimed.
Reality Check – Our salesman-in-chief exaggerates
Gov. Hickenlooper at the Denver workshop
of the Western Governor’s Workforce Development Initiative.[viii]       Sept. 18, 2017
Gov. Hickenlooper’s
State of the State Address,[ix]
Jan. 11, 2018
   The Governor noted, however, that success has a flip side. "Part of (the) challenge is that the labor pool is so tight, businesses are finding it hard to find the talent that they need. So by necessity, we are reaching out to markets we hadn’t focused on before…. "
   The search for talent also extends to younger people, in part through the new CareerWise Colorado program. "We're going to have 250 high school students going to work for 80 companies in the coming year," the Governor said. "But I want to see us get to 20,000 apprenticeships in the near future."
   “Working closely with business and education leaders, in a public-private partnership, Colorado is igniting an apprenticeship renaissance with Careerwise.
   “We’re connecting companies, talent, K-12 schools, community colleges and training centers. We have youth apprentices in pilot programs at 31* schools in four districts and we’re partnering with 40 businesses.”
Additional Reality Check – 116* students, not 250
as reported in The Denver Business Journal, (NOTE) Aug. 17, 2017
“More than 40 employers offered 116 youth apprenticeships in four industries: advanced manufacturing, technology, business operations and financial services.”
*Final Reality Check – Now, 103 students, in 24 schools (email to me from CareerWise, Jan. 15, 2018).

2.       “The CareerWise model borrows elements from the Swiss system, which is widely regarded as the gold standard in apprenticeship, in that it ensures benefit to both students and businesses as it serves as an intermediary between the complex systems of education and industry.”[x]

It is great to learn from other states and countries, but let’s remember, context matters. (More on this later: DPS and Cherry Creek.)  My foundation experience taught me this—often translated from the world of medicine as “donor-donee compatibility.” To transplant an organ into a new body is risky business.  Will it prove receptive—or inhospitable, and reject the new heart, kidney, or liver?  A nonprofit adopts an idea that flourished in one setting, only to find it to be a poor match in a different location.    

What if borrowing “elements from the Swiss system” conflicts with the goals Coloradans have set for our kids?  “Compulsory school in core subjects” ends in Switzerland after completion of their “10th grade.”[xi]  This is not our system.  We still expect students to meet the Colorado Academic Standards, yes?  And yet we know a terribly high percentage of our students cannot do that in twelve years.  Who expects 20,000 students to meet these expectations when they miss school almost half of junior and senior year?

3.       “CareerWise apprenticeships require a student be out of the classroom for two or three full days each week,* so working with districts on scheduling flexibility and graduation requirements is crucial. They also require collaboration regarding programs of study and coursework. Again, the task shouldn't be put solely on teachers, counselors, and administrators – and with CareerWise, it isn't. Our team works closely with districts to ensure a smooth process for students, businesses as well as educators and administrators.”[xii] (*Last week CareerWise spoke of a change: seniors next year might work only 20 hours—not 24.)
“Flexibility,” “collaboration,” working together “to ensure a smooth process…”– it all sounds nice.  CareerWise tells me Denver Public Schools has been especially accommodating in making the weekly schedule work for the 41 Denver juniors involved this year.  But what if business is asking too much?  How flexible can schools be?  Next year, can they tell seniors: you have to meet our graduation requirements, even if you miss school two or three days a week—at work?  These 17-year-olds might receive some valuable training on the job, but these are students, first, not workers. It is our task as educators to graduate them “college and career ready.” How can we do this in half the time?

4.       “CareerWise is the first modern youth-apprenticeship system in the United States.”[xiii]

“CareerWise embodies the idea that businesses should lead the effort to ensure our education system prepares students for the competitive, global 21st century economy.”[xv]

I was taught that when a nonprofit presents itself as “the first of anything in the United States,” beware.  Proponents come across as presumptuous and willfully ignorant.  CareerWise is learning from other programs, yes? (See Youth Apprenticeship in America Today: Connecting High School Students to Apprenticeship.[xvi])

It is condescending to tell educators we should adopt a new mission: serve business, focus on career preparation, and replace education with training for the workplace.  Is it now our purpose to see students “earn a real living wage”?  Is this why we teach?

5.       “CareerWise is an initiative created by leading Colorado industry associations. These industry leaders understand that schools are not experts in addressing the needs of businesses. By partnering with these organizations and focusing on experiential learning, we believe we can meet these needs and provide added benefit to all students.”[xvii]

True, principals and teachers are not experts “in addressing the needs of businesses.” In fact, it never crosses our mind.  Why?  Because this is not our purpose. This is not what drives us.  Educators want to make a huge difference in the lives of our students, if we can.  At the very least, at a minimum, we hope to do our job: to educate.  And to be successful at this, we need time.

·         We appreciate why high schools ask the state to respect their efforts to graduate students, even when it takes five or six years.  (See letter from Commissioner Katy Anthes.[xviii])  Note too: “Denver students taking longer to graduate….,” Chalkbeat Colorado: “… 10.1 percent, or almost 6,500 students, are still enrolled in high school and could still graduate after five, six or seven years.”[xix]  I enjoyed my time in an Aurora high school classroom last week – with 19-year-olds still learning English.  It is good we can extend public education until these students turn 21.  More time, not less, is critical for so many.
·         We recognize how many charter and innovations schools have added time to the school day and/or school year in order to better meet the needs of their students.  
·         We know that Colorado has one of the shortest school years in the country.[xx] It is even more distressing to be reminded, as one headline put it, “Half of Colorado School Districts Have 4-Day Weeks”[xxi]  And now, it’s not just for rural school districts anymore: Brighton too?[xxii]   
(Talk about being a national model—perhaps we will be the first state to make four-days a week the norm! And for junior and seniors – heck, they only need to show up roughly half the time….)

More time in school is proving critical for student success.  CareerWise takes the opposite approach.

Context matters: CareerWise at two Denver high schools – Graduating “college and career ready”?

This first year CareerWise Colorado has student apprentices in 24 high schools, including three Denver schools sending 10 or more students.  Abraham Lincoln and High Tech Early College are two of the schools. Consider (below) their low attendance rate, high truancy rate, and recent ACT/SAT scores—well below College Readiness Benchmarks. The state’s most recent report on their graduates who enroll in college show most require remedial classes (2015-Abraham Lincoln-65.6% - yes, 59 out of 90); High Tech-60%[xxiii]).  So of course I doubt that most juniors from these schools will be able to take, as CareerWise literature asserts, “college-level coursework aligned with your career pathway” and earn “approximately 6 debt-free college credits.” (I would love to see the high school transcripts of these 21 students after they graduate in 2019.)

Attendance Rate
Truancy Rate
ACT  2016
ACT 2016
SAT 2017
SAT 2017
College Readiness Benchmark Score

(11th gr.
(11th gr.)
State Average
Abraham Lincoln
High Tech Early College
More details, sources, Addendum C.

Again, context matters. Addendum C compares these two schools with five Cherry Creek schools—sending an equal number of students into apprenticeships this year.  We all want Denver students to have all the opportunities in the world, but first they need a sound public school education, leading to a high school diploma that reflects a certain degree of learning.  As I have written, I doubt this is the case now: “High school graduation rates aren’t necessarily a reason to celebrate,” The Denver Post, July 2015.[xxiv]  I fear CareerWise will be one more way to award diplomas that mean little in terms of academic skills and knowledge.

CareerWise Colorado staff met and talked with me about these matters, but I cannot see how it all lines up.  For example, how can a CareerWise student (in DPS, for example) earn 230 credits?  I am told “schools are giving elective credit for the time spent at work.” Meeting what academic standard, I wonder.  At schools like Lincoln and High Tech, students need more time for teaching and learning, more interventions, more support.  Sure, that disengaged sophomore might love to be out of the building DOING something “real” his last two years of high school.  But schools cannot—or should not—surrender our responsibility; these 15-16 year-old kids have one final crack at a free public education.  Training for job skills can come later. We have a huge challenge as it is: to help our students graduate “college and career ready.” First things first.

A letter from a former teacher

Dear Business Community: Please know, we are your allies  

“… at its best, schooling can be about how to make a life, which is quite different from how to make a living.”                                               Neil Postman, The End of Education

From Jim Collins, author of Built to Last, Good to Great and How the Mighty Fall
“Aligning Action and Values”[xxv]
 “Studying and working closely with some of the world’s most visionary organizations has made it clear that they concentrate primarily on the process of alignment…   there is a big difference between being an organization with a vision statement and becoming a truly visionary organization. The difference lies in creating alignment—alignment to preserve an organization’s core values, to reinforce its purpose, and to stimulate continued progress towards its aspirations.”

Educators have much to learn from business, especially from those who stress the need for a clear purpose and a strong commitment to a mission.  As Jim Collins argues, above, alignment is key.  K-12 education is jeered for having an amorphous mission—“You name it, we start it,” or “We just say yes”—and it rings true.  We know we must work harder to establish clear goals and stay aligned with our core values and chief purpose. Your recent initiative, however, only exacerbates our struggle to avoid further “mission creep.”

Business men and women—many of you might not realize how public education in America has spent much of the past 25 years working to clarify our goals around a set of strong academic standards.  I offer here a brief history: how Colorado’s three previous governors kept us “aligned” and on the same path.

·         It began in 1993, House Bill-1313 – the standards bill.  No one made a stronger case for this new direction than our governor.  Thank you Roy Romer.
·         It continued in 2000, Senate Bill-186, an accountability bill calling for school report cards.  Thank you Gov. Owens.  During his time in office House Bill-1433 was passed, leading to the creation of Colorado’s growth model in 2008—HB-1048 (showing student progress toward the state standards), signed that year by Gov. Ritter.  Romer to Owens to Ritter.  Consistency. Thank you.
·         In 2008 Colorado stayed the course with Senate Bill 212, Colorado’s Achievement Plan for Kids (CAP4K). It called “for the development of rigorous standards delineating what students need to know and be able to do at the end of each grade to be college and career ready.”[xxvi]  In 2009, Senate Bill 163 provided more clarity connecting accountability with the state’s standards.  Thank you Gov. Ritter.

Assessments and accountability, even when poorly designed or badly executed, looked first to the standards as their guide.  This has led to many controversies over these many years, and yet through it all major business organizations have backed this work: to establish high expectations and to restructure education in ways to help more and more students demonstrate they can reach these standards.  And we are grateful.

Sadly, Gov. Hickenlooper seems oblivious to this. (Again, Addendum B.)  This history, this context, is why K-12 educators will push back on CareerWise and similar efforts. It is not about being anti-business.  It is about trying to stay true to our mission.  If we believe alignment is key, we must keep our focus: to help our students learn what is essential—before they graduate.  That is our job.

Are we pleased with our progress? No.  Do we understand why the business community is frustrated that our focus the past 20 years—standards and accountability, etc.—has not led to significant improvement? Yes.  Shouldn’t we redesign high schools to make the final two years more engaging and meaningful?  Again, yes. 

And when we read: “The founders and team at CareerWise recognize that high school graduates are ill-equipped to enter the workforce,” would we agree?  Absolutely.  To get them there—I would like to assure business leaders—we are your allies

The “knowledge economy” of tomorrow—that is your phrase, yes?  We read that, in hiring, you look for “good communication skills”[xxvii] (this old English teacher is cheering!) and the ability to adapt, to continue to learn, to work well with others.  The Dean of the Business School at Villanova writes: “Employers want graduates who can think critically, analyze data and challenge the status quo.”[xxviii]  These are our goals too!  We believe by doing all we can to help all students meet the standards we give them the foundation to be contributing members of American society: as individuals fulfilling their potential, as good citizens, and as members of the workforce.
That last phrase, “as members of the workforce,” matters. But it is not the purpose of K-12 education.  Our “end”—or goal—is broader. We are reaching higher than that.

This is why we say: Sure, let’s find ways to help our students see what’s ahead, connect to the workplace, and serve internships, etc.—but do not tell us you want to take students out of school much of junior and senior year to train them in your business.  We need every day possible—maybe more than four years—to provide the interventions and support to ensure our students learn the fundamentals, before it is too late.  It is what they, and their families, deserve.

Our mission, the business of education, is education.


Addendum A

CareerWise Colorado – Part of Hickenlooper’s legacy on education?

Chalkbeat’s Capitol Report – “What makes a legacy?”[xxix] (by Erica Meltzer, Jan. 15, 2018)

Hanging over the session is the question of whether anything grand will come out of it that might cement Gov. John Hickenlooper’s legacy [Bold mine].

In an interview last fall with Joey Bunch from Colorado Politics, Hickenlooper cited two initiatives that he considers his greatest accomplishments: the launch of an interactive, personalized trails map that should help people get outside and enjoy our state more and the CareerWise apprenticeship program that gives high school students access to work experience, college credit, and income. Hickenlooper devoted considerable attention to the apprenticeship program in his State of the State address, and it’s growing in its second year — though it still has a ways to go to reach its full potential.

“Hickenlooper in the homestretch: Colorado governor ponders his legacy, not his future”
(Colorado Politics, by Joey Bunch, Oct. 17, 2017)[xxx]

His biggest idea is apprenticeships to help secure good-paying jobs for those young people who don’t get a college degree. Hick said most young people still don’t get a college degree. “Yet we’ve told all these kids that unless you go to college you’re a failure, essentially,” he said.

A junior in high school who enrolls in the program could go to work in banking, insurance, cyber security or advanced manufacturing, as examples. Three days a week they could work and two days a week take classes at a community college related to that work.

Along with a high school diploma, they would have a year of transferable college credit, along with a taste of income and responsibility from their job, Hickenlooper said.

“I think this is one of the most important things I’ve ever worked on and an amazingly powerful solution,” Hickenlooper said.

Colorado is the first state to work on a database, called Skillful, to inventory the experience and training someone has and show them the skills they need for the job they want, plus where they might go to get those skills.

The idea is so good the New York-based Markle Foundation, Microsoft and LinkedIn have put $25 million behind its development.

But the clock is ticking.

“I’ve got 469 days to prove we have a model that’s worthy of being a national model,” Hickenlooper said.

Addendum B

 The Hickenlooper Administration:  From liberal arts to training
THAT WAS THEN: 2014 - 2015
Defending the liberal arts

AV #115 - “Sorry, Governor(s), but the purpose of education is not ... a job” (July 4, 2014)
“I came to Colorado to study rocks … and ended up selling beer.”
On how he made the transition:
“… I was lucky that I had had a great education, some great teachers, a good liberal arts education at Wesleyan University, so I had learned how to learn.…” - Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper[xxxi]

AV #130–“The basis of a well-rounded liberal arts education for K-12: Colorado’s Academic Standards,”
(May 15, 2015)                                                                                                           [Bold mine]

   Lt. Gov. Joe Garcia spoke at the Microsoft YouthSpark Connections Breakfast last month.  The session could have focused exclusively on STEM, but he—and other speakers—reminded us of the big picture: “We don’t need just scientists and engineers,” he said, we need them with “a good liberal arts education.  What makes innovative students? The arts. The ability to communicate.”  And when Suma Nallapati, Colorado’s Secretary of Technology and the State Chief Information Officer, was asked what advice she would give high school students who wish to be ready for the job market, answered: “Focus on the liberal arts.  We don’t need to separate them from STEM.” 

THIS IS NOW: 2017 - 2018
Gov. Hickenlooper doubles down on one theme: training for the workplace

Gov. John Hickenlooper’s State of the State Address – Jan. 12, 2017[xxxii]  

Realizing their potential?

And quality of life starts with a good job.
From high school students wanting to work as apprentices--to the many Coloradans who want a new career--either from passion or necessity--these jobs should be available for everyone.
If we do this right, there should be an opportunity for thousands of Coloradans to acquire skills either in classrooms or on the job that are career-focused and transferrable to different industries in the future. …
Today, we are a national model for matching education with skills based training.
Sean Wybrant is Colorado’s Teacher of the Year. He has been teaching for 11 years at Palmer High in Colorado Springs, as he said, to “change the world.” And he’s changing it by focusing on the one-third of our kids who won’t go on to four year or two year colleges. He’s preparing the next generation for the career and technical jobs of tomorrow.
Tim Kistler is the Superintendent of the Peyton School District in El Paso County, where he helped open the Woods Manufacturing Program in an empty middle school. It teaches students cutting edge skills needed in the woodworking industry.
We thank both Sean and Tim for helping to close the skills gap, and for making sure all students realize their potential.
Closing the gap means giving students a solid foundation for success at every step of their education, as they move from preschool through K-12, toward college, certificate, or apprenticeship and onto a good job.  

Gov. John Hickenlooper’s State of the State Address – Jan. 11, 2018[xxxiii]

Workforce, training, skills – “We don’t need no education”

In his State of the State on January 11, Gov. Hickenlooper moved directly from the issue of money for schools back to his favorite – I won’t call it education – theme, because he is not talking about education. I will call it his workforce, training, skills theme.

… to create the kind of workforce that will keep our state at the forefront of the new economy, we need to go beyond the funding issue – we need to rethink and retool our approach. We need to transition from a degree-based education system to one that also includes skill-based training.

Experts tell us over 60 percent of our kids in school today will not get a 4-year degree. Careers and professions by the dozens will be swept away in the coming decades. But new industries will emerge at an equally frantic rate. We will need not just engineers but huge numbers of technicians and analysts with new sets of skills. We need to get more kids learning skills that matter….

We need flexible solutions that can adapt to what employers need tomorrow, not just what they need today. This means training and apprenticeships.

Working closely with business and education leaders, in a public-private partnership, Colorado is igniting an apprenticeship renaissance with Careerwise.

We’re connecting companies, talent, K-12 schools, community colleges and training centers. We have youth apprentices in pilot programs at 31 schools in four districts and we’re partnering with 40 businesses.

This isn’t your grandparents’ version of apprenticeship. This is on-the-job, skills-training in industries, like business operations, health care, and advanced manufacturing.

Within a decade we want to see twenty-thousand students per year receiving college credit, developing skills, and learning how business works. Apprenticeships are designed to grow hand in glove with Skillful, a digital platform, developed with LinkedIn and the Markle Foundation, that will help connect job seekers and employers in this new economy….

Projections of all kinds suggest we will fall well short in trained workers…in every industry in the next decade. We need all hands on deck. We need to expand our training programs and tailor them for people with disabilities and the incarcerated soon to be released. 

There’s a lot to do, but Colorado has become an early model for the country. I presented our apprenticeship and Skillful programs to dozens of executives from some of the nation’s largest foundations, who are putting their considerable weight behind solving challenges of the 21st century, and building a skills-based workforce

Addendum C

2 DPS high schools, 5 Cherry schools – all part of CareerWise Colorado in 2017-18

There are 21 juniors from in the program this year from Denver’s Abraham Lincoln and High Tech, and 21 juniors from five Cherry Creek schools.  It is possible, of course, the 21 Denver students performed well above their school average on college tests.  But note the huge gap in the scores on college admission tests, and–after graduation from high school--the percentage of students requiring remedial classes in college.  The contrast is telling enough to invite the question: will most of these Lincoln and High Tech students graduate “college and career ready,” when they will miss nearly half of their academic program junior and senior year in fulfilling their commitment as student apprentices?

I trust we still believe that time in school, in class, learning academic subjects, matters.

Attendance Rate
Truancy Rate
ACT  2016
College Readiness Benchmark Score*

(11th gr.)
(11th gr.)

State Average
2 DPS high schools with 21 student apprentices in CareerWise in 2017-18

High Tech Early College

5 Cherry Creek high schools with 21 student apprentices in CareerWise in 2017-18

Cherokee Trail High School
Cherry Creek High School
Eaglecrest High School
Grandview High School
Overland High School

*ACT tells me those benchmarks of 18 (English) and 22 (Math) apply for both juniors and seniors.
SAT offers a breakdown for the benchmarks by grade – see below.  I use the 460 (Reading and Writing) and 510 (Math) as they are benchmarks set for 11th grade, and the 2017 scores above are from last year’s junior class (now seniors).

See  “The Values of the College and Career Readiness Benchmarks—Across the SAT Suite of Assessments, the benchmark scores are as follows:”

Assessment – Grade Level
Evidence-Based Reading and Writing Benchmark
Math Benchmark
11th grade
10th grade


[vi] AV#171 - Gov. John Hickenlooper (on CBS, Face the Nation): “Two-thirds of our kids are never going to have a four-year college degree, and we really haven’t been able to prepare them to involve them in the economy where the new generation of jobs require some technical capability. We need to look at apprenticeships. We need to look at all kinds of internships.”[vi] (August 7, 2017)
[vii]AV#171 – “(Ginsburg) echoes the college-but line, telling The Grant Junction Sentinel: “What do we tell everyone to be successful in this country? You need a college degree.  But only a third do. So we’re basically saying to the rest of the country that you’re something less. (College) needs to be a choice that’s attainable, but it’s not the only path.”
ALSO, from the PBS News Hour last August, “Colorado apprenticeship program turns the factory floor into a classroom,” where both men made this point about which students would be well served by apprenticeship programs:
·                  GOV. JOHN HICKENLOOPER: For more than 30 years, we took on this challenge that we were going to make sure every kid went to college, and this was the only solution. But we have barely nudged the needle in terms of how many kids actually go to college and graduate. And in that sense, I think it’s been a failure.
·                  NOEL GINSBURG:   I was part of that mantra, saying everybody should go to college. The reality of it is, that’s never going to happen. In this country, what the percentages? Twenty-eight percent, at best, will get a four-year degree in this country.
  So, we’re essentially telling everybody else that they can’t be successful in our economy and in our country. And it’s simply not true.
[xi] Ginsburg explaining the Swiss model at the Governor’s Business Experiential Learning Commission,
“Colorado is committed to keeping students in school if they fall short of graduation requirements or are in a program to earn college credit. As a result, the state’s five- and six-year graduation rates provide a more accurate picture of high school completion.”
The Colorado School Finance Project reports that 80 of Colorado's 178 districts, or 45 percent, have all their schools on four-day weeks. Nine more districts have some schools on four-day weeks, meaning half of all the districts in the state have at least some students on this schedule.”