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Is a Four-Day Work Week in Our Future?

Are we seeing the gradual demise of the five-day workweek and school week? More importantly, if that change occurs, will it be by choice or government mandate?
The Dallas Morning News reports, citing the Texas Classroom Teachers Association, that 40 Texas school districts have shifted from a five-day to a four-day week. Another dozen are in the process of making the switch. And several more districts are looking into the option.
As you can imagine, some parents are supportive of the transition, others are not.
One problem is what parents, who have a five-day workweek, do about younger children who no longer have to go to school on Friday. Some of the four-day schools are providing a type of day care option to address that need.
Schools that have made the switch say the four-day week helps to attract and retain teachers, especially in rural areas.
But now some Maryland state legislators think transitioning to a four-day workweek is a good idea for everyone, not just students and teachers, and have introduced legislation to start the process.
Oh, and Maryland will make available taxpayer-provided subsidies to companies that make the change.
The Maryland legislation is called the “Four-Day Workweek Pilot Program and Income Tax Credit.” The bill would “incentivize companies to switch to a four-day workweek, allowing employees to work 32 hours instead of 40 without losing any pay or benefits,” according to Fox News. [Emphasis added]
Private employers with at least 30 employees that choose to participate would receive a tax credit of up to $10,000, which is intended to offset part of the cost of paying employees the same for working fewer hours. The state will spend up to $750,000 per year for up to five years on the subsidies.
And the United States isn’t alone in considering a shift to a four-day week—though Maryland may be alone in thinking it has to ladle out taxpayer dollars to do it.
The BBC reports that a recent pilot program in Great Britain ended with 56 of the 61 participating companies saying they will continue with the four-day week, at least for now.
It’s hard to know if this shift is the first step in what may become a national, or international, trend toward a shorter workweek. The Covid pandemic, along with new technologies and work-from-home practices, have forced a rethinking in how and where employees work.
What we do know is that if employers see a shift to a four-day week as beneficial to their customers and employees, they will likely make the change without the government subsidizing it. 
The real threat isn’t a change in the workweek; it’s progressives in the government concluding they must lead the charge by mandating the change whether employers, employees or consumers want it or not.