School holidays – the time of an academic year that pupils most look forward to. The Summer holidays, Christmas holidays and Easter holidays are all a number of weeks long, but always seem to end too early. Apart from those, we also have half term holidays, bank holidays and long weekends. This can make you wonder – exactly how many weeks of holidays do we receive as primary and secondary school students?
Most schools receive between 13 and 15 weeks of holidays. This number is relatively similar between both primary schools and secondary schools. The academic year in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland typically lasts a total of 39 weeks. The academic year is split into three terms. Each term has a two-week holiday in between (either Christmas or Easter holidays) with the exception of the six-week-long summer.
Keep reading this article to find out more information about when school holidays are, and how they may differ between schools.
When are the school holidays?
In England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the academic year has a total of 39 weeks, or around 273 days of school. These 39 weeks are split into 3 terms: the autumn term, the spring term, and the summer term.
The autumn term is the first after the summer holidays. It begins in the middle of August and ends in early December. Every term is split into two. Near or in the middle of the term, there will be a half-term holiday that lasts one week or slightly less (5 days).
After the autumn term is over, the Christmas holidays will begin. These typically last 2 weeks but can sometimes last 3 weeks. At the end of the Christmas holidays, the new spring term begins.
The spring term typically begins early January. Then, the Easter holidays will begin near the start of April. These holidays will then end after two weeks, or approximately two weeks.
The next term after the Easter holidays is known as the summer term. This is the final term of the academic year. The summer term ends near the end of May or start of August. In total, there are around 91 days of holidays.
Within these 39 weeks of school, pupils are expected to attend school for a certain number of hours a week to pass the attendance limit. Find out more about this by clicking here to visit a Think Student article.
When are the school holidays for 2022/23 academic year?
Now you might now the order of events in an academic year, but what are the exact dates for these events in the 2022 to 2023 academic year.
You can find the start date and end date each event lasts in England in this handy table below:
|Event||Start Date||End Date|
|Autumn term||1st September 2022||16th December 2022|
|Half term||24th October 2022||28th October 2022|
|Christmas holiday||19th December 2022||2nd January 2023|
|Spring term||3rd January 2022||31st March 2023|
|Half term||13th February 2023||17th February 2023|
|Easter holiday||3rd April 2023||14th April 2023|
|Summer term||17th April 2023||21st July 2023|
|Half term||29th May 2023||2nd June 2023|
|Summer holiday||22nd July 2023||1st September 2024|
To find more information on England term dates you can visit the government website by clicking here and enter your postcode to find the term dates within your area.
On the other hand, if you are a Scottish student you will need to visit the Scottish government website by clicking here. This is because most all counties and cities in Scotland are able to decide term dates among themselves, meaning they differ throughout the country.
If you are a student in northern Ireland, then click here to visit the NI education website where you will find the term dates specific to this country.
Do you have to go to school on public Holidays?
There are many public holidays in which you will not need to turn up to school. Some of these become long weekends. See the list below to see all of the Bank holidays in the UK.
- Christmas Day (25th December)
- Boxing Day (26th December)
- New Year’s Day (1st January)
- Good Friday (7th April)
- Easter Monday (10th April)
- May Day Bank Holiday (1st May)
- Spring Bank holiday (29th May)
- August Bank Holiday (28th August)
It is worth noting that not all schools give their pupils a day off on these days. You will need to visit your school’s website to find out exactly which Public and Bank holidays apply to you.