Phoenix area school district to adopt four-day workweek for its teachers

A large school district in the Phoenix area has a new tool that it is using to recruit new teachers: four-day workweeks.

Officials with the Cartwright School District say their teachers will work for four days a week, starting with the 2023-2024 school year, meaning teachers will have a three-day weekend.

"We're ready and excited for it," said Hanna Mulholland, a 1st Grade teacher at a school within the Cartwright School District. "My family is huge to me, so being able to see them a little bit more, that means the world. I am also really excited to have an extra day to rest, rejuvenate and sharpen that saw before coming back to kids on Monday."

During the COVID-19 Pandemic, Cartwright School District's 19 schools adopted a four-day week for its 14,000 students. The district's superintendent said when in-person instructions resumed, they kept the four-day schedule for students because families overwhelming preferred it.

"They said having that extra day was a blessing. Really helped a lot," said Leeann Aguilar Lawlor.

For district officials, it wasn’t simply a matter of changing schedules on paper.

"We didn't just say ‘we’re going to a four-day work week’ We had a four-day implementation task force that got together, and everybody – custodians, transportation, teachers, you know what’s this kind of look like? How we’re going to make this happen?"

Cartwright School District employment opportunities:

District officials said they have discovered that a four-day workweek is a great recruiting tool for new teachers. Already, district officials say they have received calls from teacher applicants asking for information.