Cantabria is first region in Spain to implement new school calendar
Cantabria, up in the north of Spain, has become the first autonomous region to introduce a school calendar similar to the most advanced European countries, with less holiday time over the summer months and a week’s break every two months.
The school year will start slightly earlier than it does now and finish a little later. In concrete, classes for the start of the first term and new school year will begin on 8 September, and the year will end on 27 June.
However, the difference between the school calendar in Cantabria from other regions is that students will be able to enjoy aweek’s break from lessons and term time every two months: November, Christmas, February and Easter.
The longest period without a break will be 44 days, while the shortest will be 31.
Dates for the school term have been coordinated between the Department for Education, the teachers’ syndicates and the Association of Parents.
As well as a brand new school calendar, it has been decided to keep pupil numbers to a maximum of 25 in the second cycle of infants’ school and in the first three years of primary school.
However, this ratio will be maintained for the following school year (2017-18) for the last three years of primary school as well.
While teachers will also be glad of a more structured school year with more regular breaks from teaching, many of them will see their teaching hours reduced from 20 a week to 18. Any hours taught over this amount will be considered as extra.
These changes have been implemented in a bid to reconcile work and family time and to ensure the health, working conditions and education of both students and teachers.
Many parents, teachers and students believe that the summer holidays are too long and that there is too much term time between September and the first set of holidays, which would be Christmas.