How long is a school day USA? – School Hours and Terms

In this article I want to talk about how long is a school day in the USA, so let’s run through it together. The school year is divided into either four terms or two semesters, dependent on the school. Students usually take their breaks in December, February, and April. The school day runs usually from around 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

How long is a school day USA?

The school system is one that requires students to attend up to eleven years, but most students complete twelve. The average class size is 23 students. The American education system also offers a rich field of selections for international students.

How long is a school day USA?

Apart from how long is the school day in USA, there is such an assortment of schools, programs, and locations that the choices may engulf students, even those from the U.S. As you begin your school search, it’s important to acquaint yourself with the American education system.

Understanding the system will help you trim down your choices and develop your education plan. Students in the U.S. normally attend school for 180 days a year, starting in September and running until June.

Since the United States is in the northern hemisphere, its summer starts around June, at the end of the school year. Summer vacation runs from June to late August.

School Hours and Terms

The school year usually runs from early September until May or June (nine months) and is divided into ‘quarters’ or terms (semesters). Most schools use a semester system made up of two sessions: fall (September to December) and spring (January to May).

Some schools use the quarter system, which comprises three sessions: fall (September to December), winter (January to March), and spring (March to May or June).

School vacation dates are published by schools well in advance, thus allowing parents plenty of time to schedule family holidays. Normally, parents aren’t permitted to withdraw children from classes, except for visits to a doctor or dentist, when the teacher should be informed in advance whenever possible.

The school day in elementary and high schools can vary but usually runs from 8 am to 3 pm or 3.30 pm, with an hour for lunch. In high school, students take six one-hour classes or four 90-minute classes (with ten-minute breaks between classes). Extra-curricular activities and sports are scheduled after school hours.

Registration and Transportation

At elementary and secondary levels, students usually attend a public school close to their homes. If you have a preference for a particular public school or school district, it is usually necessary to buy or rent a property in that area.

It’s quite normal for Americans to ask a real estate agent to find them a home in a particular school district. Schools prefer children to start at the beginning of a new term (semester), although this isn’t necessary.

Many towns provide transport to school (buses), although this may only be provided for certain schools or age groups, and may depend on the travel distance to the school, e.g. there may be a bus service only when the distance from home to school is over 2 or 2.5 miles. Some towns provide buses for children in special education only.


In most states, school children must be immunized against a range of diseases before starting school. These may include polio, DTP (diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis, or whooping cough), and MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella or German measles).

Tuberculin screening may also be necessary. (If your children have been vaccinated against tuberculosis, be sure the school knows this, as they will test positive when screening is performed.) Evidence (in English) of the appropriate inoculations, including exact dates, is required when you apply to a school.

Provisions and Meals at School

It’s common for children in elementary school to take a packed lunch to school, although some schools allow children who live close to the school to go home for lunch. Most elementary and secondary schools provide a self-service cafeteria where children may purchase lunch, and some children receive free lunches under local welfare programs.

High school students are provided with lockers where they can store their books and other possessions. Schools provide bike racks for students who bike to school and high schools also provide student parking lots. You can check for more details from this link.


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