Saturday, April 20, 2024

Case for four-term school calendar

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ON TUESDAY, August 10, 2010, I heard a report on the radio, that schools would be re-opening one week late on Wednesday, September 8 “to facilitate planning and preparation for the re-entry of students”.

Teachers and schools have eight to nine weeks summer vacation. Why should these government workers need more time to plan and prepare?

Who else gets 14 weeks vacation per annum? It is necessary that the terms of employment (salaries, vacation, and so on) of educators or teachers be evaluated and compared with that of policemen, nurses and other workers in the public service.

I suggest that the school year should be divided into four terms with a total of eight weeks vacation – two one week vacations, a two week vacation at Christmas and four weeks of summer.

The remaining six weeks deducted or saved from the existing 14 week vacation schedule can be used for planning, preparation, evaluation, correcting of examination scripts and training.

The benefits of my proposal are numerous; students would learn more without the eight to nine week gap; the shorter vacations and school terms would be more restful and manageable; the physical and mental health of students and teachers would improve, the government would not need to organise extensive and financially costly summer camps; female teachers would spend less foreign exchange on overseas vacations.

With this there would be an increase in productivity, and so on.

NICHOLAS HEADLEY

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