Diwali in UAE: 4-day long weekend announced for some school students

Classes will not be held on Wednesday or Thursday this week



Photo: Shihab
Photo: Shihab

By SM Ayaz Zakir

Published: Tue 2 Nov 2021, 1:50 PM

Last updated: Tue 2 Nov 2021, 3:55 PM

Some schools in Dubai have announced a welcome long weekend for students on the occasion of Diwali.

Classes will not be held on Wednesday and Thursday this week, the schools said. Combined with the weekend, that amounts to a welcome four-day leave.

“Well-being is the prime focus here,” said Zubair Ahmed, head of operations at Springdales School, which has announced a four-day long weekend for Diwali.

Elaborating on the importance of the move, he said, “We have all had very tough times recently. The government started the trend of the long weekend so that families could spend quality time with each other and it is a strategic alliance with well-being goals.”

Zubair highlighted how several destinations tend to be booked out on the weekends. Giving students an extra couple of days off would facilitate their visits to such places, which would, in turn, contribute to happier environments.

“Since we are a CBSE school, it is important for us to celebrate the culture of India. As children don’t get the chance to see the celebrations in India, we wish to help them understand the culture and the country, irrespective of religion and background,” Zubair added.

Dubai's Global International School has also extended the weekend for its students on the occasion. School principal Antony Koshy said: “Diwali is the festival of lights. Spiritually, it symbolises the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, and knowledge over ignorance."

Marking the festival is also symbolic given that the "past 18 months have been a battle for all of us”, he added. “In the UAE, we have a global community and people from all backgrounds and nationalities are happy to be a part of any celebration."

Besides, he noted: "Our children have just finished their mid-term examinations and would love to have a break!”

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The principal has urged parents to spend quality time with their family, venture out and see the world together with their children — and, of course, follow all Covid protocols in the process. “The value of being together with one’s family will now be greater than ever before,” he said. “Plus, everyone can enjoy the long weekend together with the current beautiful weather in the UAE.”

Schools in Sharjah have also planned a long weekend for pupils. EP Johnson, president of Indian Association Sharjah, the governing body of Sharjah Indian School, told Khaleej Times, “With permission from the Sharjah Private Education Authority, we will be giving a one-day holiday to our staff and pupils on Thursday, November 4, on the occasion of Diwali.”

ayaz@khaleejtimes.com


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