U. of California shifts academic calendar for Rosh Hashanah

(JTA) — The University of California system shifted its academic calendar for the start of a new term to avoid a conflict with the Jewish High Holidays.

The change, which affects all seven of the U.C. campuses, means that campus move-in days will not be in conflict with Rosh Hashanah, The California Aggie, the daily student newspaper of the University of California, Davis, reported.

The term will begin on Oct. 2, a week later than usual, and winter break will last two weeks instead of three, according to the newspaper.

The change in the schedule was affected in order to comply with a U.C. policy that conflicts with “the observance of a major religious holiday.” The Policy for Addressing Religious Holiday Conflicts with Residence Hall “Move-In” Days was created in 2007 following complaints the previous year from the Jewish community, when move-in days conflicted with the High Holidays, according to the Modesto Bee.

The policy last affected the start of the school year in 2009, when late August move-in days for U.C. Berkeley and Merced, which operate on the semester system, conflicted with the Muslim holiday of Ramadan.

Some 3 percent of U.C. students on the seven campuses identify themselves as Jewish, according to a 2010 University of California Undergraduate Experience Survey.

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