My kids are still in school and it is June 25th. It is 100 degrees outside, a perfect time to be swimming in our pool, eating Popsicle, and going to the park, they are sitting in a hot school under florescent lights. In January- they will be out of school when it is like 12 degrees outside and the only thing to occupy their time is fighting and watching TV.
Year round school has been around, in some form or another, since the 1800s. The theory behind it was that the kids would benefit from shorter breaks, thus not losing all that they learned over a prolonged break. It is also said to save money. However, Charles Ballinger - executive director of the National Association of Year round education- says a year round schedule cost the same as a traditional school year.
As for the benefits for kids, I have seen none. My kids get a 6 week summer, which they don't forget anything they learned. Sure when they get back to school they it takes a few weeks to get back into the swing of things, but it does every time they go off track. My youngest has a particularly hard time re-adjusting to school after being off-track. A process that is unfortunately repeated multiple times through out the year.
As far as I can see, it does save money by allowing the schools to fill the school with more children. They can have a lot more kids if an entire track is always off, the teachers just have to move class rooms every time they go off. So instead of ponying up and building the right amount of schools, the government forces the kids to go year round. I would love for our school to do away with it, like many in our area have, but since there are over 900 kids enrolled at our school, it won't be anytime soon.