I can understand why you feel it should be all run within the school year. And perhaps, you never know, the new owners may change the schedule. I just thought I would give you a chess organiser’s perspective on the timings.
So, at the moment the junior chess season tends to run from September/ October through to April/May, with various junior competitions and inter-County matches (e.g. the EPSCA Under 9, Under 11 and Girls Under 11 competitions). Very approximately, the season goes:
September – May: Main Junior chess season
January – April: School/clubs run Qualifying competitions for the Megafinals
April – June: The Megafinals take place
May – June: GCSEs and A Levels are sat
July: Gigafinals take place
August: Terafinals/Challengers take place
In my County, schools start closing for the Summer Holidays as early as 7th July this year. So to run the Terafinals/Challengers before then, you are looking at the end of June at the latest. So perhaps the Gigafinals will take place at the end of May? Already, those players taking GCSEs and A levels are affected. Now of course currently Megafinals do run until June, but such students could choose to play in a Megafinal in April.
Following on this logic, the Megafinals would be played February/March to May. But the school qualifying competitions need to be finished before the Megafinal for that area, so suddenly some schools need to squeeze their competitions in between January and February. And then what of the ‘Last Chance Saloons’ for those who failed to qualify? Plus of course, all this is happening in the busy part of the normal junior season with other competitions taking place.
This is just a rough illustration and I am sure some people will say ‘Ah, yes but....’. However, my point is that if the dates are brought forward by so much, all that will happen is a different subset of parents will complain about the timing of the competitions! What to do? That is the problem with a competition involving 50,000 kids – the timings are going to be inconvenient for someone.