Cape Breton University might be the latest to embrace the idea of a fall reading week.

Students have had a spring reading week for years, but many have argued a similar break in the fall would help them catch up and stay focused.

“A lot of people assume that first semester is easier,” said political science student Brandon MacDonald. “But in all reality it's the same amount of stress as a second semester.”

MacDonald is one of hundreds of students who have signed a petition asking to support the idea.

“I thought maybe it should have done a while ago,” said MacDonald. “It's been on the corner of my mind for most of my time here.”

Brandon Ellis, president of the Cape Breton University Students’ Union, says other universities are getting on board with the idea.

“Most other Atlantic schools have some type of break, whether it's two or three study days or the full week. I think it's very easily attainable,” said Ellis.

Ellis says there appears to be support for the idea from the administration, but there’s hesitancy from others with it would be starting the university year a few days earlier.

“Senate has endorsed it, but it comes down to labor negotiations,” said Ellis. “It will be between SPFA – the faculty association – and NSGEU, the other association here and the university.”

Students are hoping for a week sometime in October or November to spend time focusing on their studies. Ellis says a decision on the matter will be soon

“Labor negotiations are happening this upcoming spring, so imagine that will be the time it will be made official. An endorsement from senate certainly goes a long way,” said Ellis.

With files from CTV Atlantic’s Kyle Moore.