‘Christmas shopping day’ is not extra holiday

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Teachers have defended a so called ‘Christmas shopping day’ that saw many secondary school staff and pupils in West Herts enjoy a day off on Friday.

But the occasional day, which has been criticised as a chance for teachers to get their festive shopping done while others work, has been defended by county bosses and teachers.

King Langley School headteacher Gary Lewis said: “I think some parents are under the illusion that it is an additional day, it is simply part of the allocated holiday.

“It has been tradition in Dacorum that there is a day in November to break up the long autumn term.

“Teachers have always accepted that they are going to attract public stick because of this perception of extended holiday.”

Herts County Council spokesman David Henning said: “The schools across the county are allocated up to five inset and occasional days per school year.”

Teachers are at school for 190 days of the year plus five inset days, when students are off but teachers are undertaking training.