Sunday, 28 August 2016

Estonian school year to include five breaks beginning autumn 2017 I ERR News

The Minister of Education and Research has signed a regulation which will add an additional school break to the spring schedule, beginning in the 2017/2018 school year. This will allow for periods of study to be broken up into more more manageable, health-promoting and learning-friendly semesters.

"Spring terms are currently ten to fifteen days longer than those of the beginning of the school year and serve to worsen students' and teachers' spring fatigue," explained Minister of Education and Research Jürgen Ligi. "An extra break during winter will be beneficial and provide the opportunity to hear more about the joys of spring rather than fatigue."

The minister noted that the system has already been able to prove itself. "Feedback from schools that have already tested out the five-break schedule has been almost exclusively positive," explained Ligi. "Since this change will affect the schedules of hundreds of thousands of parents and children, we highly value the experiences of schools and local governments that took advantage of the exclusive right."

The proposal to switch to a five-break school year schedule was supported by students, school directors and local government representative organisations alike.

The breaks in the 2017/2018 school year, the first to follow the five-break schedule, will be scheduled as follows:

1. Autumn break: Oct. 21-29, 2017

2. Winter break: Dec. 23 2017-Jan. 7, 2018

3. Ski break: Feb. 24-Mar. 4, 2018

4. Spring break: Apr. 21-May 1, 2018

5. Summer break (excluding seniors): Jun. 12 - Aug. 31.