South African school calendar for 2024

South African school calendar for 2024

The South African school calendar for 2024 including Schools Opening Date for January 2024, comprises four terms, each with its distinct start and end dates:

  1. Term 1: January 17 to March 20 (46 days)
  2. Term 2: April 3 to June 14 (52 days)
  3. Term 3: July 9 to September 20 (53 days)
  4. Term 4: October 1 to December 11 (52 days)

Historically, the coastal provinces, including the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Northern Cape, and Western Cape, operated on a different schedule than the inland provinces, such as Free State, Gauteng, Limpopo, Mpumalanga, and North West. This separation is now a thing of the past, as all schools are expected to adhere to the new nationwide calendar.

While the Basic Education Department has not provided an immediate explanation for this shift, the move toward a unified calendar is expected to bring about several advantages. One of the primary benefits is the creation of a standardized academic environment throughout the country. Students and educators will now share the same timeframe for school terms, fostering a sense of unity and coherence in the education system.

Impact on Holidays and Tourism

The change in the school calendar is likely to have ripple effects beyond the classroom. Holiday resorts and destinations, which typically experience an influx of families during school holidays, may witness changes in tourism patterns. With the academic terms now more closely aligned, the holiday period will be compressed into a shorter timeframe, potentially leading to increased demand and occupancy during these peak vacation periods.


The decision to implement a unified school calendar in South Africa for the year 2024 marks a significant step toward a more cohesive and standardized education system. While the immediate impact may be felt in holiday destinations, the long-term benefits of a synchronized academic calendar are expected to contribute to a more streamlined and efficient education system across the nation. As South Africa moves forward with this change, it will be interesting to observe how it shapes the dynamics of education, tourism, and family life in the coming years.


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