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Traditionally there are three terms in the academic year, during which pupils or students are expected to attend for classes. These are usually referred to as Autumn, Winter, and Summer terms, although some universities use alternative, traditional names, such as Michaelmas Term for the Autumn Term. The academic year begins at the commencement of the Autumn Term and ends at the close of the Summer Term, with breaks at Christmas, Easter, and July–August. School terms are usually longer than college or university terms, and are punctuated by half‐term breaks, usually of a week's duration round about the term's mid‐point. In 2001 the Independent Commission on the Organization of the School Year recommended that schools should adopt a six‐term year, incorporating a shorter summer break. This was to be in place by 2005, but is proving contentious and difficult to implement in many local authority areas. Those who support the idea of reorganizing school terms in this way suggest that it would have advantages for the timing and assessment of public examinations such as the General Certificate of Secondary Education and General Certificate of Education Advanced Level.

Subjects: Education.

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