No break for two schools
At least two of the islands schools have opted not to take the mid-term break this year.
For the past week, classes continued as normal at the Seventh-Day Adventist School and the St Cyprian’s Boys’ School.
Principal of The Seventh-Day Adventist Secondary School, Dr Cecil Cummins, said that for the first time since the mid-term break was implemented the school would be working through the break.
“After having tried it for the last two or three years, we realized it has been disadvantageous to us completing the syllabus.
“From past experience the break has come at a critical time in the school calendar, and we have had a number of breaks already.
“We have found that when we return from this mid-term break we have great difficulty in getting started again because students are in holiday mood,” Cummins stated.
He said that the first term of the school year was the longest and the one where most of the curriculum was covered.
“He added that the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) examinations were starting earlier in the year which left less time for actual teaching during the second term.
“Term three is actually a non-teaching term so we want to maximize the teaching periods in this term,” Cummins said.
He added that the school was currently on course with the syllabus but the main challenge was getting the School Based Assessments done.
The school is examining the possibility of giving the week’s leave at the end of the term.
The primary school has implemented a similar programme.
At St Cyprian’s Boys’ School, principal Dave Layne said that his school had a planned activity for later in the school year which would take away several instruction days. The decision was therefore taken to forego the mid-term break.
Layne explained that the school fair held on Independence Day would fall in the middle of the week and they usually needed the day before to prepare and a day or two after to get back into shape.
“We will be losing almost an entire week in November. In an effort not to lose any teaching time we decided to go through this break and will take that time in November,” Layne explained.
Layne said that the school had informed the Ministry of Education and was told that as long as it kept within the number of months stipulated for instruction, there would be no complications.