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Starting School

(18 Posts)
maria1966 Thu 14-Apr-05 11:44:27

My ds will just be 4 in aug 05 and should start school in sept 05.
I am worried he won'nt be ready,it seems such a young age to send him even though i know he will be pargt time to start with.
Does anyone know if it is law that he has to attend this soon or could it be delayed until the next term or so?
Would be interested if anyone else has faced this situation.

LIZS Thu 14-Apr-05 11:56:29

Law is the term after they turn 5 so you could defer a whole year but unless there are exceptional circumstamces (SN etc) he would join year 1 . This would mean the others would have already passed through Reception so could be a difficult transition for him socially and academically and you may not get the choice of school as they aren't obliged to hold an empty place. Many schools do staggered starts for younger ones -either part time from September, or entry in January or at Easter. Each school varies in policy though, so you'd need to discuss it with them, some are more flexible than others.

maria1966 Thu 14-Apr-05 12:08:17

Thanks Lizs for your reply.
My ds is not SN but has not attended pre school that often due to me having anxiety and agrophobia problems at the moment.
The HV came this week and they are obviously keen for him to attend more and she said he would have to go to school in september.I felt very threatened and worried by this and she made me feel i was such a bad mother.
Just feeling a bit pressued.
Ds is a bright little boy and i do loads of things at home with him ,cooking,reading ,painting etc.
But the HV says i am just doing these things to make up for not taking him to school.
But i know i would still be doing those things even if he was attending school more regulary.

coppertop Thu 14-Apr-05 12:13:59

The HV sounds awful!

Could you call the school he would be going to and ask them what their policy is? He may be able to start in January instead. Legally you don't have to actually send him to school at all. You can teach him at home instead if that's what you would prefer.

Pre-school is not compulsory and you have every right to choose not to send him. The HV is wrong to make those comments to you.

debs26 Thu 14-Apr-05 12:14:23

some hv make me sick. he does not have to go until the following year, ds2 was 4 in aug 04 and i chose to let him go because i found a school which was flexible about allowing him to go part time or spend time in their nursery class if necessary. if i had not found this school he would not have gone (tho it was a worry that he would start in yr1). we had a few teething problems as he is young for his age in some ways but i am now glad he went because he is very happy there and is coming along faster than i think he would have done at home. if i were you i would look around all possible schools to see which is most accomodating and speak to the head and reception teacher. sack the hv, she sounds horrid

foxinsocks Thu 14-Apr-05 12:33:46

maria, I hope everything is going well for you at the moment. You sounded like you were making real progress last time you posted (about some trip overseas I think, to see the inlaws?)

It's not the law that he has to attend but I would think seriously before you decide to defer it. There will be other children in the same boat as him (my dd is august born as well and has just started full days this term having done 2 terms of half days). She absolutely loves it and there were plenty of other summer born children. The teachers are well used to it and make allowances for the younger ones.

Are you worried about having to do the school run because of your agoraphobia? Don't feel you have to answer if you don't want to.

maria1966 Thu 14-Apr-05 13:10:08

Coppertop and debs26 I appreiciate your comments.The HV kept saying he really needs to socialise with other children and then i lost it and got really upset saying I more than anyone knows that.She then went on to say she was concerned about the children ,i have a dd who is 2 and that i really need to move on now before i start to affect them with my anxiety and agrophobia.I just felt so scared and threatened.
I am working with a CBT therapist who is fab and we are getting there,but the HV comments just really made my confidence dip to an all time low.

Foxinsocks,i was feling more positive before the trip,which i did manage to make but unfortunatly was not apprreicated by my in laws and was constant diging about my mothering skills and mil kept telling off DS for the sillest of things that the whole trip made me more anxious and angry.It's kind of you to have remembered me from a previous post.

I have had some info from the school and they are trying to be as helpful as possible.
I know what you are saying debs26 and i know it would be better if he started in sept ,as you say i am sure there will be other younger children in the same situation.

maria1966 Thu 14-Apr-05 13:14:42

Foxinsocks i am concerned about my agrophobia and the school runs but i have a great therapist who is working with me to overcome this.
It,s just this HV seems to make it sound so black and white and putting me down when she could'nt make me feel any worse or guilty than i already do.

poppy101 Thu 14-Apr-05 13:15:27

Please don't worry, coming from experience, there are some parents who worry about that their child is not ready.

Speak to the teacher if really concerned, but she will probably say for you to not worry, your child will be fine. Often it takes a while to settle the children in the school, going part time is a good way for the children to adjust. Child might get upset for a little while, the teachers and nursery nurses will be used to settling them. You might be worried but might just find that the child is happy and content and will go off to play and not cling to you on the first few days. Please just don't worry, if the teacher has any concerns, they should pick up these concerns within the first few weeks and approach you about it. Don't worry, sometimes the youngest children in the class turn out to be the happiest and get on with their work really well. Trust me !!

cod Thu 14-Apr-05 13:18:24

Message withdrawn

cod Thu 14-Apr-05 13:19:24

Message withdrawn

poppy101 Thu 14-Apr-05 13:21:08

I'm not a hv, I was an early years teacher and educator and therefore have had many upset mums and young children to settle.

maria1966 Thu 14-Apr-05 13:31:43

Thanks poppy101,that;s reassuring.

Sorry Cod,not quite sure what you mean,as in using this as an excuse?

foxinsocks Thu 14-Apr-05 13:54:01

wow, well done for making the trip! I think a trip overseas for someone with agoraphobia is bloody impressive. I'm glad you've found a good therapist - she/he sounds fantastic. Just remember, even if the in laws didn't appreciate what you did, you should be proud of yourself for making it in the first place. Unfortunately, you can't always rely on other people to appreciate how the agoraphobia affects you but at least you can be pleased for yourself!

As for feeling guilty, well that's a trick of the anxiety/agoraphobia - don't put yourself down and try not to let the HV's comments get you down. I know it's easier said than done but it's so easy to get into an anxious spiral. As I'm sure you know, every little step forwards should make you more confident.

Really, don't worry about the school. Let him start and if you feel he's not coping, then you can deal with it. It will make you feel so much less guilty/anxious when he starts because then you'll know he's getting his fill of social activity and then there's less pressure on you to make up for any perceived lack of it at home.

maria1966 Thu 14-Apr-05 14:28:57

Thanks again,foxinsocks.
Making that trip was a real effort and may sound strange to an outsider that i could do this whilst suffering from agrophobia.But i was really pressured into doing this for my dh,children and in laws and took weeks leading up to it of anxiety,terror and awful panic attacks to build myself up for it.Even down to planning in my head the journey in long it would take etc and going off my food beforehand and whilst there in anticipation of the journey back.

I am sure deep down my ds will be fine,he's a bright little boy with great character and i will work with the therapist to conquer this.
A simple trip which most people would,nt give a second thought to.

clary Thu 14-Apr-05 14:49:03

maria as i’m sure others have posted (haven’t read thread) you are not obliged to send him to school until the term after he is 5 (ie sept next year)
but chances are unless you manage to negotiate otherwise he will then start straight into yr 1 which would be impossibly hard for any child imho
I do know someone who held their august child back and they started in reception when they were just 5, but they had extra reasons ie developmental delay etc. Even then they had a big argument!
I agree they are very young, but think it is a good idea to start when everyone else does by and large, make friends, learn together etc.
DS1 and DD are june b/days, ds1 started in the January as there were still 2 intakes then but dd will start this sept at 4.2months. Very young like yr ds. But I think in her case she will be ready.
I would talk to the school about how they are going to handle it. Our school had 3 reception classes this year (the 1st with just one intake) and had all the summer babies in one class and tbh they settled the best!

maria1966 Thu 14-Apr-05 15:07:37

Thanks Clary,sounds very encourgaing.
I agree that starting him a year later would not be in his best interests,and would be better for him to start reception and then move up to 1st year with the children he will have got to know

clary Thu 14-Apr-05 21:47:48

maria have read the rest of the thread now, poor you with the insensitive health visitor, but I'm sure she meant well (in a rather heavy-handed way).
I could understand if the school run was making you nervous so good luck with your work to overcome yr fears.
And yes, wrt your ds, as someone else said, the teachers are ready to deal with any problems and very experienced.
I guess you just need to be aware that yes, he may get very tired and then let it all out on you at 3.30pm (but most of us seem to have that to deal with now and then!)
BTW have you got a school place now for your son?

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