Leading article: Spring break

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There is another complication this exceptionally early Easter has in store for us, aside from wintry precipitation. For many families with children, it is extending the school holiday season to three, even four or five weeks. This makes it more difficult for families to get away together and more difficult for working parents to reconcile family and job responsibilities. In other years, a late Easter nudges right up against the two holiday weekends in May.

As a movable feast, Easter has long complicated school holidays. That the problem is posed so acutely this year should finally precipitate action. One option would be for ministers to face down the ire of teachers and give new impetus to the still patchy introduction of a six-term year. Another would be finally to sever the link between the religious calendar and school holidays. The two reforms are complementary, and both are long overdue.

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