WIRRAL has pulled out of plans to standardise term times for schools across Merseyside.
It had been confirmed last October that the Learn Together Partnership - a collaborative of Halton, Knowsley, Liverpool, St Helens, Sefton, Warrington and Wirral education departments - was to consult on plans to re-organise the school year, including the scrapping of the raditional Easter holidays.
But despite it winning region-wide consensus from parents, teachers, unions and church leaders, Wirral council has now snubbed the idea while it waits to see what neighbouring Cheshire does.
Currently, term times can vary, making it difficult for teachers and parents to make plans because the two-week Easter holiday coincides with religious celebrations.
Easter Sunday can fall anywhere between March 22 and April 25.
In the shake-up, the traditional Easter holidays would be replaced by a set “spring break” during the first two weeks of April.
If Easter falls outside that time, schools will not open on Good Friday or Easter Monday.
Schools will break up for summer towards the end of July until the end of August.
Liverpool is to pilot the plan from September with the remaining authorities due to come on board the following year.
But Wirral council has confirmed it will not even entertain being part of the shake- up until at least 2012.
Cllr Tony Smith, spokesman for the borough’s children’s services and lifelong learning overview committee said he did not envisage any problems for being out of the loop and said it “would be silly” to change the status quo until the intentions were known of the borough’s Cheshire neighbours which is now split into two authorities.
But he said: “I think something could happen in the future and we will be watching the pilot with interest.”
Both Cheshire West and Cheshire East councils have said they will be sticking to existing holiday patterns in 2010-11.
A Cheshire West spokesman added: “We will see if there is an appetite for change. But when this was raised in 2004 there was no appetite for change then.”
Sheena Shanahan, assistant head teacher at Park High, Birkenhead, backs the changes.
Her parents look after the children because of different term times. Her children have also been at school while she and her partner are off.
She said: “I work in Wirral, my husband teaches in Sefton and my children go to school in Halton.
“As long as everyone does the same it could be fantastic.”
Steven Peach, head at Oldershaw high, Wallasey said: “If Cheshire and Merseyside could come together it would be even better.”