Vietnam's students should have shorter summer and longer Tet break

By Thanh Y   January 11, 2024 | 04:00 pm PT
Vietnam's students should have shorter summer and longer Tet break
A teacher takes students to their classroom at a primary school in Hanoi on the first school day after the Tet break on Feb. 10, 2022. Photo by VnExpress/Duong Tam
Vietnam could greatly benefit its students by restructuring the academic calendar, particularly by shortening the summer break in favor of an extended Lunar New Year (Tet) holiday.

I recall witnessing students cycling to school on chilly, dark mornings. A longer break during Tet, a time traditionally reserved for family reunions and rest, would be more advantageous for them.

Currently, Vietnamese students enjoy a three-month summer break, primarily established due to the intense summer heat, particularly in the northern and central regions. This decision was made when classroom conditions were less than ideal – small spaces and a lack of fans.

However, the situation has since evolved; many classrooms are now equipped with air conditioning, and it's common for students to attend summer classes outside of regular school hours. Given these changes, the government should consider reallocating some of the summer break days to the Lunar New Year holiday.

Experiencing school in the early hours of a summer morning is generally more agreeable than during the cold, wet winter mornings. A proposed adjustment could involve starting the school year in early August instead of September. This change would allow for a 20-day break during Tet, encompassing approximately 10 days before and after the peak of the holiday.

*Editor's note: Most cities and provinces in Vietnam have planned a two-week Tet break this year, with the holiday's peak on Feb. 10. Hanoi students will experience the shortest holiday, lasting only eight days.

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