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EDUCATION

REVEALED: France’s new holiday dates for the 2022/23 school year

School in France is far from out for summer but the dates have been released for the 2022/23 school year complete with holidays and "bridges". Take a look so you can plan your holidays.

REVEALED: France's new holiday dates for the 2022/23 school year
(Photo: Pascal Pavani / AFP)

It’s the time of year children dislike most – as is traditional, rentrée in France is on September 1st this year, a Thursday, a day after teachers return to the classroom to prepare for the new term.

The 2022-23 school year then ends – 36 school weeks later – after classes on Friday, July 7th, 2023, later than in recent years and just a week before the fête nationale on July 14th.

 “My class will be almost empty the last week, families will have gone on vacation, especially if the tourist prices are considered out of vacation, therefore less expensive,” a  teacher in Paris told Le Parisien.

Another was concerned about the weather at that time of year. “The longer we get into the year, the hotter it gets. They already forecast 35C on May 18th, so on July 8th, I can’t imagine the heat in class,” she said.

School holidays in France have long been divided into three zones. Summer, autumn and Christmas holidays are taken at the same time across the whole of the country, but the winter and spring breaks are staggered according to which zone a school is in.

The educational zones in France are here 

Image: Service-Public.fr

The Ministry of Education has published a calendar planner for the 2022/23 school holidays on its website, showing the holiday periods for all three zones in France.

Image: ministère de l’éducation nationale et de la jeunesse et des sports

The calendar is available to download as a pdf, here

Notably, pupils in Zone A schools – those in Besançon, Dijon, Grenoble, Lyon, Clermont-Ferrand, Limoges, Poitiers and Bordeaux – face a longer-than-usual summer term, a two-and-a-half month stretch from April 24th to July 8th. This is a longer term than is usually recommended by education experts – longer even than the 10-and-a-half weeks at the same time last year for two zones, which was described as “a marathon” by both families and teachers.

There will be some breaks in that long run of school weeks, however. May Day and VE Day are both on Mondays next year, Ascension is on Thursday, May 18th, with schools traditionally ‘bridging’ the Friday, and Pentecôte holiday is on Monday, May 28th.

On the flipside, pupils in the same zone also get the shortest term on record in the next school year. They return after the Christmas holiday on January 3rd, and break-up for the winter holidays on February 4th.

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LIVING IN FRANCE

Phone bills, English-language films and Covid tests – 6 essential articles for life in France

From advice for non-EU citizens on how to avoid racking up massive phone charges in France to finding undubbed films and learning more about France's fiercest local rivalries, here are some must-read articles for life in France.

Phone bills, English-language films and Covid tests - 6 essential articles for life in France

Travelling without access to the internet is almost impossible these days. We use our phones for mapping applications, contacting the Airbnb, even scanning the QR code for the restaurant menu.

If you have a phone registered in an EU country you don’t need to worry, thanks to the EU’s cap on charges for people travelling, but everyone else needs to be careful with their phone use abroad. Here’s what you need to know.

How to avoid huge ‘roaming’ phone bills while visiting France

Speaking of travel … the virus that should not be named hasn’t gone away. Here are your questions answered on testing, isolation and medical treatment if you fall sick while on holiday.

Paxlovid, tests and isolation: Covid care for tourists in France

Going to the cinema is one of life’s joys for many people – and France, the home of Cannes, is well known as a nation of cinephiles.

But what if you want to enjoy an overseas film with its original language soundtrack rather than one that has been dubbed into French? You can do that…

Reader question: Can you avoid seeing a dubbed movie in French cinemas?

The risk of tsunamis in the Mediterranean Sea is real – on October 16th, 1979, a tsunami, caused by a landslide, hit the coast of Nice and killed a dozen people. More recently, the Greek island of Samos in the Aegean Sea was hit by a tsunami in 2020.

But the climate crisis and rising sea levels mean that experts fear they will no longer be rare events along the Mediterranean coast in the next 30 years.

French riviera: Unesco tsunami warning for Marseille and Cannes

In very much related environmental news, France has endured at least 43 heat waves have been detected since 1947, but they are becoming more alarming – with the latest one, before all the storms, breaking temperature records all over the place.

So, here is how the country plans to change the landscape of its cities in order to cope with ever-increasing canicules.

Trees to trams: How French cities are adapting to summer heatwaves

And finally … From football to breakfast pastries, France contains some fierce local rivalries which are mostly fought through words and gastronomy, but occasionally spill over into physical battles. Here’s a look at what near neighbours in France love to hate about each other.

Cassoulet to cider: Where are France’s fiercest local rivalries?

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