2010-11 school calendar year adjusted to accommodate Canada Winter Games in Halifax

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Students in Tri-County will keep their March Break, but will have longer Christmas holidays. Schools in the Halifax area will close for two weeks in February

To accommodate the Canada Winter Games being held in Halifax in 2011, the province has adjusted when some schools in the province will have their “March break” during the 2010-11 school year.

Students in the Tri-County Regional School Board will still have their March Break during the month of March in 2011 – the dates are March 14-18 – but schools in Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) will close for two weeks in February.

The week-long March break for staff and students of the Halifax Regional School Board will move to February, followed by another Canada Games week break from classes. Schools in the HRM will close from Feb. 14 to Feb. 25, inclusive. This same closure will also apply to metro-area schools of the Conseil scolaire acadien provincial (CSAP).

To ensure students in HRM do not lose class time, the school year across Nova Scotia will start early and end late in 2010-11, running from Sept. 1 to June 30. Christmas break will also be shortened for schools in the Halifax Regional Municipality, and one teacher professional development day rescheduled.

Students and staff elsewhere in the province, including those in the Tri-County Regional School Board, will share the same Sept. 1-June 30 school-year calendar. But aside from keeping their traditional March Break these students will receive a longer Christmas holiday to compensate for the longer school year. In December 2010 the Christmas break for students in this area will be Dec. 20 to Jan. 3.

Schools outside metro will remain open as usual through February 2011.

At one point there had been talk of adjusting the March Break for all schools and students in the province. However, the province says that keeping the major adjustments in the school calendar confined to HRM schools during the Canada Winter Games minimizes disruption to students and staff elsewhere in the province, while ensuring Games organizers have access to the student volunteer support and school facilities they need to host a successful event.

The Halifax Canada Games Society will use two Halifax schools as venues – Citadel High and Sackville High – and rely on volunteer support from more than 1,000 students, who will act as minor officials throughout the Games.

The last three provinces and territories to host the games ¬– New Brunswick in 2003, Yukon in 2007 and Newfoundland and Labrador in 1999 – moved March break and closed schools in the host region to accommodate the games.

This will be the first time in 24 years that the province has hosted a Canada Games. Cape Breton was home to the Winter Games in 1987. More than 2,700 athletes will compete in over 20 sports, attracting thousands of visitors, VIPs, officials and media.

Organizations: Tri-County Regional School Board, Canada Games, Halifax Regional School Board Halifax Canada Games Society

Geographic location: Halifax, Canada, Nova Scotia New Brunswick Newfoundland and Labrador Cape Breton

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