Holding Summer born boy back a year

(97 Posts)
Oopla Fri 01-Feb-13 19:57:55

DS is a July baby and started nursery the sept after he turned 3. I'm thinking of asking his nursery teachers if it would be possible for him to stay another year in preschool.
He has settled ok in nursery but doesn't particularly look forward to going (is a real homebody) and its taking him a whole to get used to the social side of things. In my heart I don't think he's emotionally ready for full days and more structure. Not keen on him being the smallest boy in the class either.

It's a standard state nursery attached to a primary, not sure if they will just laugh me out the room! Can you think of the pros and cons of this idea or any thoughts about it? Many thanks.

TINKERBELLE33 Fri 01-Feb-13 20:15:10

I wanted to do this and was told I could but DD would have to move to reception at Easter and continue through school with her peer group. She has mild SEN and I feel she would be better placed a year below as her emotional development would be equal to her classmates. She is also working at levels approx 1 year below her age. I have just had the conversation with the ed psych about moving her and have been told its not appropriate. I still think this would be better especially as she is bullied by some of her classmates.

redandwhitesprinkles Fri 01-Feb-13 20:18:37

As they have to join school with their 'original' year group in year 1 anyway, I personally think you are delaying the inevitable. However, only you know your son. I will be sending summer born dd in September but she loves nursery.

Oopla Fri 01-Feb-13 20:32:11

Thanks for your experiences. Ah I didn't realise they were so rigid about the date of starting. Presumed he could go back and stay back a year. sad

MorningHasBroken Fri 01-Feb-13 20:34:45

We tried this for August-born, shy, quiet, short, and dyslexic dss in primary. We were told by the school that the councils only allow it in extreme cases, as they have to report results based on age not year group.

Ie a 16 yr old in yr 10 would have to be included in the yr 11's results ( the year they should be in, normally), thereby making it look, on paper, as if that child had failed all exams rather than simply not having taken them yet. Obviously this then reflects badly on the school and LA. Don't know if I've explained that very well!

Private schools tend to be happier to move kids down years as they don't do the same reporting.

As he gets older there could be some stigma attached as kids realise that he should be in the year above, maybe?

FWIW, dss found his feet and has flourished in his proper year group, think they all get there in time.

DomesticCEO Fri 01-Feb-13 20:36:33

Sadly not Oopla sad. We are bizarrely rigidly wedded to chronological age in this country.

I worried a lot about my June born boy but a term and a half in he's fine.

YellowAndGreenAndRedAndBlue Fri 01-Feb-13 20:38:31

I have a few random thoughts on this, not massively coherent for which. Apologise!

Firstly, you do not have to start your child until the term after they turn five. So whether they laugh or not, they can get knotted.

Secondly, many schools used to follow 'rising fives' system, for many of the reasons you outline. children who used to follow the rising fives system were absolutely fine joining their peers in school later. The 'friendships' argument is unconvincing.

Thirdly, many people say 'you'll have to send him/her in the end so might as well do it now to get hem used to it'. This is an illogical argument, sending a child when they personally are ready is the best thing to do.

Fourthly, technically both settings will be following the EYFS curriculum so it is a social/environment/length of day/etc decision, not a curriculum one.

Fifthly, here in the UK we send out kids to school very early but still have much worse outcomes than other nations. Many other European countries send much later.

Finally, be true to your self. You want your child to be happy. The school does not know your child. You know your child.

Accept a place at your chosen school, speak with your preschool, make your decision later - as you know you can legally defer and not lose your place. And also, which ever way you choose, i am sure you will not damage your child, they will be ok in either setting, it's about what you think has the edge, what you think will make them happiest. It isn't perfect vs. terrible, it is good vs. better.

YellowAndGreenAndRedAndBlue Fri 01-Feb-13 20:41:01

Oh sorry, I thinking answerered the wrong question - are you talking about moving him down a year group or just deferring his own entry to rejoin his year group later?

If you want to move him down a year group you'll need a strong case and it s unlikely to happen.

Eve Fri 01-Feb-13 20:41:16

I had this issue with my DS now in year 9.

He's sort of catching up educationally now, but wished I could have kept him back a year.

I have mentally prepared for him to resist GCSE or a levels if he needs to due to age.

Anja1Cam Fri 01-Feb-13 20:47:12

Well round here you can hold them back and not send them to Reception as 'rising 5s' but then they'd rejoin their peers in year one straight as 'rising 6s'. Check your local Authority admissions policy theirs might not be as rigid.

However our school (a state school) does have the option of giving them another year redoing reception if they are clearly not ready, this of course is done with full consultation of parents and informed by teachers experience and expertise etc and is probably quite rare. My DD is a July child and she was fine but a boy of nearly the same age (mum and I were in hospital together) was clearly not mature enough and just redid the year and is doing great thereafter. At that age they hardly notice that they have been 'passed over'.

YellowAndGreenAndRedAndBlue Fri 01-Feb-13 21:04:58

In Enland there is no such thing as rising 'sixes' because even the youngest in year 1 legally have to be in school from September after they turn five. So everyone is in their seats for the whole of year 1, however much of reception they did.

sausagesandwich34 Fri 01-Feb-13 21:19:37

I'm an August baby and only did the final term in reception -in terms of friendships it did me no harm whatsoever
I would worry now about the amounts of phonics they do now in reception, that delaying in year would be more of an issue than it was

tiggytape Sat 02-Feb-13 11:23:02

In terms of delaying his start to reception - this is pretty common and perfectly allowed. You can keep him at nursery and then he will join his reception class at Easter or beyond (so only have 1 or 2 terms in reception not 3)

In terms of putting him down a year at school, this is not a parental right at all and is something that is only granted in extreme (very extreme) cases. Virtually all special needs are catered for in the correct year group for age. If a child is simply 'young' but has no additional needs, the chances of such a request being granted are virtually zero.

There is little or no flexibility in the English system to 'stay back a year' and even when it is granted, it can cause future problems eg being forced to skip Year 6 and go straight to secondary school because the secondary schools refuse to keep pupils in the 'wrong year' for age.

Ponders Sat 02-Feb-13 11:42:25

secondaries do let them go up a year sometimes, though only if born Sept-Feb

of course in that case they do have GCSE results to be counted in the league table for their age hmm

it's not just about league tables though; IME (eldest DC now 30) they have never let them stay down/repeat a year, even before league tables. it's too rigid sad

tiggytape Sat 02-Feb-13 12:23:18

Most people don't want their children to be the youngest in the year though so given a choice, you'd potetially have most parents keeping all the youngest ones down a year.
So the July / August babies would go into the year below leaving lots of May and June babies with all the associated worries and disadvantages of being the youngest in the class and then their parents would not want their children to be the very youngest either.

I know the Scottish system allows greater flexibility but even there it is possible to be born on the 'wrong date' eg all the January and February babies and most of the December babies tend to stay back but the November babies can't because of the ways it is funded. You just get a different bunch of children being forced to be the youngest instead (although they aren't quite as young as English children at the time).
In Scotland, even if people feel they are ready, they still hold their children back a year because so many others do it and therefore their child wouldn't just be one of the youngest but potentially the 'only' youngest one.

lingle Sat 02-Feb-13 17:23:55

My son is late August born and in the year below his default age group. It really has transformed his life chances.
Secondary should (!) honour the arrangement because it was made through the LEA and their policy was to offset year-deferred children. let's hope I don't have to have a fight.
To give you an idea of how important this can be for certain children, I wouldn't change my decision even if it screwed up secondary. That's how vulnerable he was at 4. Everyone involved agreed.

But it's only certain children who "need" this. You can probably characterise them by saying it's a combination of being very immature for their own birth month yet having the potential to progress rapidly if not placed in an artificially overchallenging environment. Ds2 was just about ready to cope with a cohort of children his age and below when he started reception. He wasn't ready to cope with a cohort of children his age and above IYSWIM. And crucially, that's not something the teachers can "fix" or control. They have a bit more leeway to control the curriculum... to a certain extent.

TheDoctrineOfSciAndNatureClub Sat 02-Feb-13 17:27:37

Don't forget there will be one or two other July/August born children in the class and the teacher will be used to working across the age range.

I think the only option is to go private if you really want to keep him back a year. A friend of mine with an August-born DS kept him back and he started reception a year later, but he's at a private school.

sailorsgal Sat 02-Feb-13 18:18:29

It will depend on the child even at private school. I asked for ds but it wasn't allowed but it was for another child. In hindsight I am glad that ds is in the appropriate year. He has really matured and is doing very well in his class.

TalkinPeace2 Sat 02-Feb-13 18:25:25

DS is a late August baby.
He caught up with the rest of the class by the middle of year 1.
He's now in year 8 and doing fine at his huge state comp.

HSMM Sat 02-Feb-13 18:31:28

DD is a late July baby and she's no different to others in yr 9 now. She was happy with her peer group very early on in her school years.

prh47bridge Sat 02-Feb-13 18:39:33

I think most of this has been said already but just to make sure it is clear...

You have the right to defer entry until later in the school year. However, if you try to hold your son back for a full year you will almost certainly find that the school and LA insist on putting him straight into Y1, missing Reception completely. Most schools will already be full in Y1 with children coming up from Reception so you will have a limited choice of schools and will be unlikely to get a place at a popular school. You may be better deferring until Easter if you are concerned. If you want to do this you must apply at the normal time as if your son was going to start school in September.

Even if the LA and school agree to allow your son to start in Reception a year late there may still be problems later on when he transfers to secondary school. Many schools would insist on putting him straight into Y8, skipping Y7 completely.

I note you are concerned that he won't be able to cope with full days and more structure. Reception is generally no more structured than nursery. The curriculum is identical with the emphasis is on learning through play and preparing the child for the more structured approach they will encounter in Y1. And on the full days front, you have the right to request that your child attends part time initially.

Oopla Sat 02-Feb-13 19:01:31

Thank you so much for all your thoughtful replies and experiences.

I think I will have a chat with nursery teachers and ask their opinion also. If there really is no movement on the year 1 start then no I wouldn't want to keep him back to miss the extra time with his peers. Perhaps he will just need extra support from us making a start and a little longer phasing into full days.
We definitely can't do independent/private school grin

I had no idea it was quite so strict!

it's not as strict in Scotland - here you have the option to defer for a year and start in Primary 1 as usual. The cut off dates are different too (end of February) and a child doesnt start school until they are at least 4½ years old. Deferrals for Jan and Feb born children are agreed with no issues and they will get an extra year of the funded nursery hours. Children with earlier birthdays can be deferred too but will need agreement from nursery/LEA, etc as to whether the funding will be provided.

auntevil Sat 02-Feb-13 19:24:41

Oopla my DS3 is a summer baby. I didn't have the same worries as you - although physically he is probably the smallest and he does have some SNs.
What I noticed when I looked on the birthday board when he started is that over a 1/3 of his class were summer babies - June/July/August.
I was quite gobsmacked that there were so many - I expected a fair smattering across the year.

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