Turkey has shortened the 13-week summer break for schools to 11-week in a move to increase efficiency, the education minister said yesterday.
"Two weeks of the 13-week summer holiday are planned as a one-week break in April and November each," Ziya Selçuk told a consultation meeting on a new academic schedule model. "When scientific researches are considered, it is seen that taking a break from teaching activities facilitates learning [...]," he said.
A long period of summer break increases the possibility for students to forget what they have learned in Turkey which is among the countries with longest summer break, he asserted. "We are working on efficiency and balance," Selçuk said.
It was not possible to shorten the summer holiday more at once, which is 10 percent at this phase, said the minister. "We also see these breaks as an opportunity for students to compensate for possible learning deficiencies without getting deeper and adding new topics," Selçuk said. "Children and teachers are given a chance to take rest and participate in activities during the restructured mid-term breaks," he said, adding that students would take part in some educational activities during these breaks. Selçuk also said that each break would have a theme in the areas of science, culture, art and sports.
"The mid-term breaks are giving children a chance for activities of social benefit," he added.