THE BRONX - A new pilot program will soon extend classroom time for some students.

New York is one of five states that will add at least 300 hours of learning starting with the 2013 school year. The three-year initiative will affect about 40 schools nationwide and about 20,000 students.

Education officials say it will help make schools more competitive on a global level, make the curriculum more well-rounded, and increase critical science and math skills in all public schools.

A mix of federal, state and district dollars will be picking up the cost for the extra hours. Parents will also weigh in with their school district on what plan works best for their kids.