Explanation on Next Year’s Term Dates
The following information will guide parents in the rationale for determining the academic term dates and, we hope, dispel some of the playground myths.
We publish our term dates almost a year in advance.
2013/14 Term Dates
What is the same?
1. The autumn half term is the same as most Ealing schools (but not all independent High Schools)
2. The Christmas holidays very similar to those of other Ealing schools, although some schools are a day or two out on either side
3. The dates for the start and end of the year at roughly the same time as most schools
- Of the 175 days a year when pupils are not at school, 15 of ours are different to some other schools.
- We have not included the additonal days which high school pupils often take off for target setting etc. which can be several additional days in some instances
- Around one third of our pupils go on to Twyford High School
- Two thirds go to other high schools – both private and state, and also to different local authorities where the term dates are not the same as those in Ealing.
The three main differences with our holidays are: -
- Spring ½ term – our half term comes after a 7 weeks, beginning 24th Februrary. This then means that the second half term is only 6 weeks.
Easter – we take Holy Week and Easter Week off.
Easter Sunday is in the middle of the two week break. We share one of the Easter holiday weeks with Twyford and some other local schools.
For those with siblings in Hammersmith and Fulham, our Easter holiday dates are the same this year (as with several other inner London authorities, of which Ealing is a part).
- Summer ½ term – if we had taken the same half term as the local authority we would only have been back 4 or 5 weeks. Instead, we have evened out the summer term into two evenly sized terms to stop the long 8 week drag in the second half which younger children, and staff, find too difficult (especially with the increasing temperatures at this time of year, national assessment tests, schools shows, sports’ days, report writing, parents’ evenings and so on).
Why we decided on the dates we did: -
- The synchronicity of the holdiays can be a matter of perspective
- Children are at school for 38 weeks each year and on holiday for 14 weeks
- We have 11 weeks of holiday which are almost exactly the same as most local schools including Twyford
- The difference in real terms across the year is 15 days
- Evenly balanced terms are better for pupils and teachers alike
- A four-week term (such as proposed for the summer 1st term) is too short
- The terms are structured primarily on principles which we consider to be the best for children's educational needs and progress
- Other church schools across London adopt this approach of trying to make the terms as even as possible
- For a large majority of parents, including single parents, traditional half terms can often be the hardest time to get leave
- Aware of expensive childcare costs, we now offer our own cheap and not-for-profit childcare clubs during all inset days and half term holiday (The first of these was organized during the last inset day successfully).
- In a church school the Governing Body delegates the setting of term dates to the headmaster
- We consulted our teaching staff and all unanimously agreed that these term dates were in the best educational interests of our pupils
- There are many parents with secondary-aged pupils in other local authorities and the private sector who do not have the same half term holidays
We firmly believe that the even terms are in the best interests of our pupils and that there is sufficient balance in matching our term dates with other schools.
- Term Dates | PDF