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Kazakhstan considers shortening of school summer vacations

22 февраля 2012, 13:49
Schoolchildren. ©Yaroslav Radlovskiy
Schoolchildren. ©Yaroslav Radlovskiy
The Ministry of Education and Science is looking into shortening the school summer vacation period that makes three months at present, Tengrinews.kz reports, citing Interfax-Kazakhstan.

“This issue is on our agenda now. It is not only because of the cold weather in winter (that sometimes interrupts school in winter). Summer vacation lasts for only one month in many countries whereas it lasts for almost three months in Kazakhstan. Now we are considering the possibility of applying the foreign countries’ experience to our conditions,” Bakytzhan Zhumagulov, Minister of Science and Education, said in an interview to Kazakhstan newspaper Megapolis on Monday, February 6.

Minister said that “if we add one month or twenty days of studies in summer, this could win one week-end day for our children and they wouldn’t have to go to school on Saturday. Our children will benefit from this,” he said.

Meanwhile, Zhumagulov said that “this is not a one-day question. I think we will make a decision in the nearest three or four months,” he added.

Not all the officials support the Minister’s initiative. Kamal Burkhanov, Majilis deputy, is cited by the newspaper as saying that “cold season of the year predisposes one for study and learning. For example, I tried to use my summer vacation to write books siting in a library. Frankly speaking I wasn’t very successful in this. Let’s not deprive our children of summer vacation, that is their great holiday,” the deputy said.

Makhmetgali Sarybekov, vice-minister of Science and Education also sees no reason to shorten summer vacations. “We haven’t received any official suggestion of such a kind from the parents’ community. I don’t think we need to shorten the vacation because this would bring significant changes and confusion into the schedules and organization of rest and recreation for children and their parents,” Sarybekov said to the paper.

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