Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris introduced the Family Friendly Schools Act, which would extend the school day if passed. The bill is intended to help working parents align their schedules with school hours.
According to Forbes, the bill will be piloted at 500 mainly low-income elementary schools and offer activities from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. There will also be free programming for other days off, excluding federal holidays.
The bill awards five-year grants of up to $5 million to school districts to implement after school activities and $1.3 billion annually for the 21st Century Community Learning Centers.
“The Family Friendly Schools Act will create a first-of-its-kind pilot program to give schools resources to stay open during the entire work day throughout the school year,” according to the press release.
Some people criticized Harris’s bill online.
However, Forbes states that staff members are not required to work extra hours but are given the option to if they want to earn more money. More teachers will be hired to work those non-school hours.
According to CBS News, that other bill sponsors include Democratic Senators Kirsten Gillibrand, Richard Blumenthal, Jeff Merkley, Sherrod Brown and Michael Bennet. Gillibrand dropped out of the Democratic presidential primaries earlier this year, while Bennet is still running.
“My mother raised my sister and me while working demanding, long hours,” Harris said in the press release. “So, I know firsthand that, for many working parents, juggling between school schedules and work schedules is a common cause of stress and financial hardship. But, this does not have to be the case.”
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