Most schools in the Phoenix area start the fall session in late July through mid-August and end the spring session in mid-May through June, with a winter break from December to January and a spring break during March or April.
However, since there are more than 200 school districts in the state, each with its own variations on the standard academic calendar, knowing when vacations like spring break happen depends on which district you want to know about.
In Maricopa County alone there are more than 55 school districts and more than 700 schools, organized into Union Districts (High Schools), Elementary Districts, Unified Districts (High School and Elementary), and Technical Institutes (High Schools). As you might guess, they all have different starting dates and ending dates and different vacation schedules. As a matter of fact, not all the schools in Maricopa County operate on the same calendar at all, with some being year-round schools.
How to Find Arizona Academic Calendars
The current District Calendars for Arizona schools can be accessed online, where you can view each district separately on their official websites. Each District has a link somewhere on the main page for the calendar, which will show school starting dates, fall break, winter break, spring break, and the last day of school, so you can plan ahead.
The calendars are typically updated during the month of July and are updated in the event of school cancelations (which force a make-up day for classes later). If you don't know which school district your child attends or which school district you'll be visiting for spring break, you'll need to find their school district in Arizona.
Remember that even when schools aren't in session where you live, they might be where you're visiting. Always pay attention to school zones when driving through parts of Phoenix with schools. If there is a special school zone speed limit sign posted, obey it if you're unsure if the school is in session.
Typical Holiday Schedules for Phoenix
Phoenix area schools all typically operate on the same schedule when it comes to special holidays and seasonal breaks. However, there are some schools that stay in session year-round, which often take breaks later and for longer than regular primary schools in the United States.
Spring break typically falls in March or April, though some districts will let children out for a week at the end of February. Year-round public schools often have their spring breaks earlier and have another summer break in May or June.
Winter break is the same regardless of how much of the year the school is in session. The break typically starts the week before Christmas and lasts through January 2 of the following year. Students can look forward to at least 10 days off during Christmas or winter break, but you can expect more crowds and more expensive accommodations and flights during this festive time of year.