How Many Weeks in a School Year?

(Last Updated On: July 12, 2023)

How Many Weeks in a School Year? It depends on the degree of schooling or state and the specific school you’re contacting.

There are usually 35 to 40 weeks within an academic year at the higher school level and less, with 40 being the most popular number. States typically require between 175 to 180 school days each year in public institutions, but the requirements vary for charter and private schools and students who attend homeschool.

School Year

Due to cancellations and holidays, the 180 days are spread out over a more significant number of weeks.

The first step is to examine college classes, dive into the K-12 level, and provide an overview of state-by-state the dates that schools start every year.

Before we start our deep dive, we’ve got a wealth of information to explore. From helpful SAT strategies to our complete guide to writing excellent essays for scholarships, We’re here to help!

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How Many Weeks is a College Semester?

The college semesters for fall and spring span from 15 weeks to 17 weeks, and summer semesters can be shorter, running about 12 weeks. The weeks also contain the time for students to take their exams.

The holidays can also affect the length of time at school. For instance, Christian colleges may give students a day off on Good Friday.

Other colleges divide their calendar into four quarters that typically last one week.

Additionally, some trimesters have 12-week periods in place during the winter, fall, and spring. This arrangement is less prevalent. The trimesters may be shorter than ten weeks.

Although many colleges offer the same amount of vacation, these weeks off could be spread out over the year in different ways, which brings us to the following sections.

How Long is Summer Break in College?

The summer break is the most extended break during college, typically lasting for three months. Students have the chance to get summer jobs as well as internships, as well as travel to their home state if their school is located in a different state.

The summer break typically begins in May and runs through August. However, the exact timeframe is dependent depending on your school. Between the middle of May and the end of August is most likely the most popular combination.

How Long is Thanksgiving Break in College?

The time for fall break usually coincides with Thanksgiving. The fall break is usually longer than the other break and isn’t a whole week.

If the fall break for a school is during the week of Thanksgiving, it’s normal to begin the break on a Wednesday to allow students to return home if they wish to.

How Long is Winter Break in College?

Transitioning from college to high school is challenging, but a positive alternative is winter break. In college, winter break can range between 3 and five weeks.

There’s enough time to unwind after a tough final, spend time with your friends and family, or even take on some shifts at work.

How Long is Spring Break in College

While some colleges provide more extended winter breaks, this is not the case for spring breaks. There are always exceptions. Do not expect more than a week’s worth of spring break.

However, on the bright side, spring break usually lasts longer than autumn for college students. There aren’t too many colleges that cut spring break to a fraction of one week.

How Many Weeks is the School Year? (By State)

States often leave it to the school district (and the winter weather) to determine when they will start classes. We’ll provide the number of days.

If states have a mandate for the dates schools must be closed or open the deadline, we’ll not forget the date. This information applies to all grades from kindergarten to 12th grade at high school.

The rules are usually only applicable to public schools. You’ll have to search for a particular private school to learn more about its academic requirements.

Let’s get ready to begin!

Required School Days by State

This chart depicts the 2020 requirements for school days in various states, using information from the Education Commission of the States.

StateMinimum Amount of Days In School Year
Alabama180 days
Alaska180 days
Arizona180 days
Arkansas178 days
California175-180 days
Colorado160 days
Connecticut180 days
DelawareOnly a requirement for hours
District of Columbia180 days
Florida180 days
Georgia180 days
Hawaii180 days
IdahoVaries by district
Illinois176-185 days
Indiana180 days
Iowa180 days
KansasGrades 1-11: 186 days
Grade 12: 181 days
Kentucky170 days
Louisiana177 days
Maine180 days
Maryland180 days
Massachusetts180 days
Michigan180 days
MinnesotaGrades 1-11: 165 days
Mississippi180 days
MissouriOnly a requirement for hours
MontanaVaries by district
NebraskaOnly a requirement for hours
Nevada180 days
New Hampshire180 days
New Jersey180 days
New MexicoOnly a requirement for hours
New York180 days
North Carolina185 days
North DakotaOnly a requirement for hours
OhioVaries by district
Oklahoma180 days
OregonOnly a requirement for hours
Pennsylvania180 days
Rhode Island180 days
South Carolina180 days
South DakotaVaries by district
Tennessee180 days
TexasOnly a requirement for hours
Utah180 days
Vermont175 days
Virginia180 days
Washington180 days
West Virginia180 days
WisconsinOnly a requirement for hours
Wyoming175 days

Are there any benefits to having A Less or Longer School Year?

Are there any advantages of the shorter or more long school year? This question has been debated for several years, and both choices have pros and cons. Let’s look at several arguments on either side.

There are advantages and disadvantages to choosing a less or more long school year. Many people believe that children gain more knowledge after an extended school year. Others believe that children have a better ability (mentally, in addition to physically) to concentrate for shorter durations of time. What is the most effective option for students? Check out the article to find out!

How the US is Compared to other countries in instruction Tim

The general perception among Americans is that United States schools spend less instruction time than other nations, including countries such as India and China. Specific claims have been made that the US can provide 25 to 30% less instructional period than China. However, examining the Chinese instruction time compared to the US instruction time contradicts this claim.

Data from the OECD and World Data on Education, and World Data on Education were studied together to discover that children from India and China do not have to take more time for instruction compared to US students.

It isn’t easy to make exact comparisons between the time spent in the instruction of different countries, as the statutes of various countries might not specifically define instruction times; a sense of how instructional time is compared is possible through the analysis of data collected from the World Data on Education, which has similar standards to different countries.

Comparative studies with US schools were based on information about teaching taken from California, New York, Florida, Texas, and Massachusetts. These five states comprise a large portion of US students.

School Hours

India offers around 800 hours of education each year for students in the elementary school levels and, approximately 900 hours of instruction for students from New York, 840 for elementary school students in California and, 990 for elementary school students in Florida, around 1260 hours to students from Texas and 990 hours for students in Massachusetts.

For middle schoolers in grades 6-8, India and most US states provided roughly 1100 hours of instruction. Texas had an average of 1216 hours of instruction, New York had 990 hours, and Massachusetts also had 990 hours. Students in India might attend longer education hours than those in the US; however, the hours after instruction can be averaged since the instructional days are generally shorter.

It’s harder to measure the time students in the US attend school compared to Chinese students time spent at school in China. This is because the data obtained from Chinese school systems aren’t as precise as information gathered from school systems in India.

The number of days those students go to school in China differs based on the country’s location. However, the OECD estimates that the median number of instructional weeks for students in China has been set at 35 weeks instead of the 36-week period the typical US country has.

There is a possibility that Chinese students attend school more frequently than US students, as sure Chinese students attend school six days a week, in contrast to the five days per week that are common in the West.

But, even though students in China may have more time for school, they’re not necessarily getting more hours of instruction. A study by the Center for Public Education has concluded that the students in primary grades in grades 1-5 in China are given 90 hours of instruction per year.

This is comparable to Texas, California, New York, Florida, and Massachusetts schools. For grades 6-8, Chinese students have approximately 1000 hours of instruction per year, comparable to the amount of time in most US states.

Although China and India may not have spent longer than the United States on education. What happens to other countries like Korea, Finland, Canada, Japan, England, Germany, France, and Italy? Another time, an analysis of data collected by the OECD gives some fascinating insight.

Time Average

At the elementary level, the students of France typically spend around 926 hours of school time on average. In contrast, there are approximately 608 instructional hours per week in Finland. This is compared to nearly 900 hours of compulsory schooling across Texas, California, Massachusetts, and New York.

Finland is a top performer in almost every area of international education assessment even though they are the least time in schools of all the nations listed above. Vermont has the smallest number of hours of instruction out of all states of the US (700 hours) and needs more hours of instruction than Finland.

South Korea is another high performer but has only 612 hours of teaching time for elementary school students.

At the Middle School level, three states within the US have educational times near the top of hours for education mandatory in all industrialized countries in the past. New York mandates 990 instructional hours at the middle school level; Texas requires 1260 hours, and Massachusetts 990.

This is compared to Finland, where the average is 777 instructional hours, and Italian institutions average 1001 hours. Again, Finland is among the top performers in the field of education. The OECD data show an average of 886 instruction times at middle schools. The state comprises Florida and California.

Each ranked slightly higher than the average of 990 hours per year. Japan and South Korea also require fewer education hours than many countries in the US and have 868 hours of instruction and 867 hours, respectively.

School Comparison

More instructional time is observed in high schools compared to the elementary and middle school levels. Most states in the United States have the same amount of time required for high schools as for middle schools. Although Finland and Italy both have an increase in the number of their instruction time at high schools, which is 856 hours and 1089 hours, respectively, there is a difference here. Finland has the lowest hours, while Italy has the most extended hours.

Italy’s required 1089 hours are more than the rest of the states represented within the US. California requires approximately 1080 hours of instruction, while Texas has 1260 hours of schooling. South Korea compares neatly with most US states, with 1020 hours of instruction for high school students. Twenty-two states within the US require more hours of instruction. In Korea, forty-two of fifty US states have more instruction hours than the national average of 902 hours, according to the OECD database.

The Reasons Why the length of a school year may vary

Did you realize that the length of the school year can differ from one country to the next? Even from state to state? Many factors determine how long the school year can last, and every area has specific reasons to choose the exact length. In this blog, we’ll look at a few reasons why the size of the school year could differ. Continue reading to find out more!

Some school years are lengthier than others, and it is possible to ask why this happens. There are many reasons why the length of a school year can differ, and the blog will discuss the reasons. Keep an eye out!

There are many reasons why the length of a school year could differ in one country too. This blog will look at some of the most frequent reasons for this situation. We will also examine how these changes impact students’ learning and academic performance. Ultimately, we will share our ideas on ensuring that all students have access to high-quality education. Thank you for taking the time to read!

What’s the Quality of Education compared?

In general, the US does not spend a similar or more teaching time with its students than other countries do. This includes countries like South Korea, Japan, and Finland, among the most prosperous countries in education. There are a few points to be aware of. A key point to remember is that these analyses depend on the minimum instruction time.

It could be that schools in particular states and countries might require an additional period of education, which could alter the total amount of time that students spend in these areas. A different consideration is that informal schooling techniques like night schools and tutoring are standard in some countries, like Japan, Korea, India, China, and India. Students regularly receive additional education in the absence of school. This could have a significant impact on student attendance that is not apparent in the simplistic examination of instructional hours.

The data suggest that focusing on the efficiency with which school time is utilized is as and, in some cases, more so in addition to providing more instruction time to boost the academic achievement of US students.


In summary, there can be an average of 35-36 weeks, 175-180 days, and 9 months during the school year.

Based on a daily average, the average student spends 2,340 full days in school in the span of her life in classes K 12. That’s 6.4 years!