Japan Prefecture to Grant Schoolkids 3 Days’ Leave Each Year

Public school students in Aichi Prefecture will from fiscal 2023 get up to three weekday holidays a year in line with their parents’ days off.

The Aichi prefectural government has dubbed the leave “learcation” — a portmanteau of “learning” and “vacation” — and aims to make it easier for families to spend time together and take part in weekday learning activities outside school, while also smoothing out demand for peak-period holiday breaks.

According to the prefectural government, it is the first initiative of its kind in the country.

Pupils at public elementary, junior high and high schools, as well special-needs schools, are eligible for the leave. If such students inform their schools in advance, their absence will not be counted as truanting.

Students will be tasked with making up missed class time through self-study. The system will be gradually introduced from the second trimester of fiscal 2023.

This initiative is part of the prefecture’s plan to reform vacation-taking, and is designed to ensure opportunities for parents who work on the weekend to spend time with their children, while also encouraging guardians to take paid holidays.

“The coronavirus pandemic has changed the way people work,” Aichi Gov. Hideaki Omura said. “Now that we can see an end to the pandemic, I’d like to promote measures to reform how people take holidays.”