Shorter winter break, longer summer break for schools
The Ministry of Education (MoE) has endorsed the shortening of winter break and increasing the summer break by two weeks from this year.
The Education Monitoring Division (EMD) of the MoE had recommended shortening the winter break by two weeks.
Subsequently, the winter break has been shortened by two weeks from 18 December to 31 January. The reporting time for teachers and students will be 1 February and 3 February respectively.
The summer break has been extended by two weeks from 1 July to 30 July and reporting time for both students and teachers is 31 July.
At present, the schools have a shorter summer break of two weeks and a longer winter break of approximately eight weeks.
The first part of academic session will start from 10 February and end in 15 July while the second session will start from 16 July and end on 18 December.
The chief of EMD, Phuntsho Lhamo, said that a longer summer school break is expected to bring many benefits like re-energizing, relaxation and stretching the brains of students in different ways.
She added that children benefit academically from a longer holiday as they engage in reading activities.
The main reason for the recommendation was to allow the teachers to get adequate time for preparation and planning and to prevent the effect on different programs held during the vacations.
Shortening the winter break is also expected to give time for the preparation for the birth anniversary of His Royal Highness Gyalsey Jigme Namgyal Wangchuck.
The schools located in highlands such as Laya, Lingzhi and Lunana will, however, follow their normal academic timing, academic term starting in April and ending in mid-November.
The schools in Merak and Sakteng begin their term by the middle of March and close by mid- November.
Tshering, 40, a mother of two children, said the initiative taken by the government was for the benefit of students and parents, so she didn’t see the change in timing as problematic.
The schools located in colder place will be provided extra heating facilities like hot water and bukhari.
In the meanwhile, Bhutan Council for School Examinations and Assessment is considering revisiting the timing for the evaluation of Class X and XII papers.