Most working mums back shorter summer holidays
Sixty-one per cent of working mums reckon shorter summer holidays would help them juggle work and family life better, according to a Workingmums.co.uk poll.
The poll of over 440 working mums comes as The Guardian newspaper reports that the Government is considering cutting school holidays as well as frontloading child benefit, organising a women in business summit and creating a website where women can anonymously compare salaries, in an effort to "woo" mums. The poll showed only 16 per cent of working mums thought cutting school holidays would have a negative impact. Seventeen per cent said it would make no difference to them.
One mum suggested having a longer Christmas holiday instead "when the weather is cold and suitable for staying at home". Another said holidays should be more spaced out during the year with a longer Christmas and Easter holiday. She commented: "The summer holidays are too long, children get bored and it becomes very expensive for parents. Also, many parents have to work - how many children are on their own without supervision is a scary thought!"
Several of the new free schools which have just opened have opted for shorter summer holidays and longer school days. The move is controversial and teachers union's have expressed concern about the impact on both teachers and children.
However, Labour MP Frank Field's recent report on Poverty and Life Chances recommended shorter summer holidays based on research showing children from lower income households fell significantly behind their middle class counterparts due to the long summer break.