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Why holiday timing matters

Ros Troop and her family, above, like to go skiing together in the spring half-term break. But their plans were scuppered this year because her two sons, who go to schools in different authorities, did not have the same holidays.

Things were not much better at Easter when only one week of the boys' holidays overlapped. But at least Ms Troop, who teaches part-time at an independent school in Croydon, had the same half-term and Easter breaks as her younger son, Alexander.

David Blackman, head of Hamsey Green junior school in Warlingham, Surrey, was less fortunate. His children go to school in Crawley, and this year his Christmas, half-term and Easter holidays were all different from theirs.

"The childcare issues were very difficult because my wife works as well, and she had to take her holidays when the children were off and not when I was off," said Mr Blackman, who would like to see all education authorities agreeing the same term dates.

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