What to do about productivity at school during the summer?

Our readers have their say on Palestine, school holidays, the environment and the Rohingya

How long should school holidays be, especially in the enervating heat of a UAE summer? Sarah Dea / The National
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In reference to Justin Thomas's opinion piece Why pupils might benefit from swapping the long summer holidays for a winter break instead (August 20), I think a year-round schedule would work wonders in the UAE. Perhaps we should have three months on and one month off for all students and staff at Ramadan?

Judy Garelli, UAE

The writer of this article has clearly overlooked the fact that it gets unbearably hot in the summer. During that time, it is impossible for children to concentrate. Also, in the summer holidays, schools can do important work like maintaining their facilities.

Khurram Qureshi, Dubai

This is a good idea but too many parents are still waiting for nightfall to take their children out, even in winter. Whenever I go in the morning to the park or the beach, they are usually very quiet compared to the evenings. Therefore it makes little difference to change the holidays until attitudes change.

Neil Dimmick, UAE

The heartbreaking realities of the people of Palestine

Regarding your powerful front page article Family of children killed on Gaza beach reopen search for justice (August 22): this broke my heart.

Adriana Tomb, Sharjah

It is time for us to protect the planet on which we live

I write in reference to your article From climate change to illegal mining, debate rages over the cause of the Kerala floods (August 20): overpopulation and the exhaustion of natural resources are certainly worsening the situtation. This is a worldwide problem. Other regions are just as bad when it comes to overpopulation and the destruction of natural habitats. But in India, which has a population of more than one billion, the problem is particularly severe. At some point soon, humans have to start taking responsibility for their actions for we are destroying the planet on which we live.

Estee Coetsee, South Africa

Whatever the reason for the floods, far too many innocent people have suffered and died. At this stage, pointing fingers will not help those affected.

Elize van Wyk, UAE

People are dangerous when cornered by the powerful

With reference to your article For the Rohingya, now at least, anger stops short of militancy (August 21): there is a sad possibility that some Rohingya Muslims will turn to militancy. All animals show strength and courage when cornered by a stronger beast. The same is true of humans.

How long can the Rohingya, driven from their lands in their thousands, continue to suffer humiliation and torture? Militancy among the young is bound to happen sooner or later.

Name withheld by request