Soccer World Cup leads to longer school winter holidays

The Education Department has announced that next years South African school’s winter vacation period will be extended to ensure that schools are closed during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
This is to prevent pupil and teacher absenteeism during the matches, as well as lighten the load on the public transport system.
The 2010 FIFA World Cup will be held from the 11 June, with the final match and closing ceremony being on 11 July. The school term will end just two days before kick off and start again two days after the tournament’s final and closing ceremonies.
The Gauteng Education Department has provided a term calendar on its website that lists the following dates being applicable for the 2010 winter break: last day of the second term is 9 June, with the first day back for pupils to start the third term being 13 July. In terms of actual school days, this means a holiday of 22 days, as opposed to the usual 15. These dates apply to all nine provinces.
The Education Department has confirmed the approval and gazetting of the school calendar, thus making the aforementioned dates official. The Department has however insured that there will still be the usual 195 school days during the course of the academic year, as per prescribed policy.
Private schools that are members of ISASA (the Independent Schools Association of South Africa) have also amended their calendars: the schools that usually run a four-term year will follow the State Calendar as per the Education Department. The schools which normally follow a three-term year will next year follow a four term calendar, which is similar to the State calendar, except for differing dates regarding the end of the third term and the whole of the fourth term. They too will be closed on the same dates as all the other schools during the 2010 World Cup. The amended calendar is available for download on their website.
The 2010 Local Organising Committee, along with the Transport Department, had asked for schools to be closed, citing traffic congestion as one of the reasons.