Can you postpone your child starting Primary School?

(12 Posts)
mamof2boys Wed 03-Apr-13 13:14:04

Hi, hoping someone can help me with this. My little one isn't 4 until mid August and I feel he's really young to be starting Reception Class. I've had first hand experience with my oldest who started school when he had only just turned 4. I always felt he wasn't at the right stage of development and was at a disadvantage due to his age.

I'm a teacher myself, but I do feel our 'system' expects our tots to be responsible so quickly, reading and writing at an age when many other cultures are still allowing the children to learn purely through play.

Has anyone else considered this or indeed can you delay their start date?

Thanks!

LIZS Wed 03-Apr-13 13:18:21

Only within the same academic year if you want to have the choice of school ie January or Easter. Presumably you have already applied but you would forfeit the place if you delayed until Sept 2014, at which point dc would join Year1 at whatever school had a space.

stargirl1701 Wed 03-Apr-13 13:21:09

Only if you live in Scotland.

GreenShadow Wed 03-Apr-13 13:21:11

Depends on the school.

When my DC started, the school was so heavily oversubscribed that unless you started when told, you didn't get a place.

No way would there have been room if you waited until the children went into Y1.

happystory Wed 03-Apr-13 13:24:11

What LIZS said, if you are in England

JudithOfThePascha Wed 03-Apr-13 13:31:34

Another thing to consider is that if your DC starts a term or a year or whatever later, they will be be joining a class of children who have already been at school for a term/year. Personally, I think that's a far greater disadvantage.

Also, reception is based on the Foundation Stage, not Key Stage 1. This means there is an emphasis on learning through play and they build up gradually over the year to what is expected in Y1. To go straight in at Y1, or just have a term in YR, would be more of a jump for most children.

I do sympathise with having a younger child (my DS was one of the youngest, too) but the alternative doesn't offer advantage, IMHO.

I have one friend who, for serious medical reasons, started their child in the following YR rather than their YR. This was only possible through a very long series of meetings and hearings with medical consultants present. And they are still being told that in the next few years, he will have to jump up to his 'real' year before he hits Y6.

mamof2boys Wed 03-Apr-13 13:34:32

Hi, believe it or not we're in Kuwait but returning to England in May. It's been a disaster over here for our oldest son.

So you don't think then that your child could wait and join reception the following September? The schools in our area don't have Christmas and Easter intakes.

It was just a thought....trying to claw some control over my crazy life!

LIZS Wed 03-Apr-13 13:36:54

I don't think they have to officially have separate intakes for you to defer - speak to LA.

JudithOfThePascha Wed 03-Apr-13 13:40:05

I don't think that would be possible without serious extenuating circumstances and, as I said earlier, does lead to further problems along the line. It literally took months of meetings and hearings with various consultants and professionals present to get my friend's son into the year below and they're still being told he will have to rejoin his 'real' year soon anyway. I wouldn't recommend that as a course of action to anyone. My friend certainly doesn't feel very in control of the situation!!

No if you choose to keep you ds back then he will join in year 1 (if there is space)but he won't be able to go into the year below.

JudithOfThePascha I have one friend who, for serious medical reasons, started their child in the following YR rather than their YR. This was only possible through a very long series of meetings and hearings with medical consultants present. And they are still being told that in the next few years, he will have to jump up to his 'real' year before he hits Y6. I have a friend who was also in position and her dc completely missed yr 6 and went straight in to High School from yr 5. It has not been easy for either the child/parents or school.

TeamEdward Tue 09-Apr-13 08:11:28

My DS2 is still on the waiting list for a Reception place at our chosen school (the school DS1 goes to). He won't be 5 until July, and has obviously missed most of YrR so far. We've been catagorically told that he will have to go straight into Year 1.

blankblank Sat 27-Apr-13 21:17:55

You can absolutely defer in many schools. I researched many in London & Surrey that do offer this that I concluded it's the legal right of all kids to start the term they turn 5, which for August babies is after Easter.
I'm deciding whether to keep my girl on at nursery for 2 terms or send her to school in September. The school she's been offered is going through some upheavals (a bad Ofsted and now threats of an Academy thus teacher job insecurity/demotivation etc). Main reason for not wanting her to start is she has long hospitalised viral wheeze illnesses and there are 12 in the nursery class and 3 x 30 pupils at reception. And she is young. She likes role play, she doesn't join in the more focussed play tasks. The school said they'd accept a deferral. You have to apply get accepted then ask for deferral. I don't want her to be swamped by school but then being around so many older kids might be good for her. I don't want to hold her back but the nursery is just so lovely, and it would be good to get through another bracing winter with less germs in her life. Do what feels right. If you worry they are missing out by not being at school study together at home. Friend wise, kids fall in and out of favour for the first years anyway, so they shouldn't feel left out socially but can jump in as a fresh, friendly face! Still can;t make up my mind, though.

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