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Delayed start does not help summer borns?

(176 Posts)
catkind Thu 17-May-18 20:08:03

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-44155068

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/summer-born-children-school-admission

Is there a thread about this yet?
I'm thinking it's a dodgy conclusion to draw. The delayed group are selected for being less ready for school. In practice that could well mean less able or less mature in some way. Which is kind of proved by them still achieving below non summer borns - if it was just down to age they should be highest achieving in their delayed class. So actually the fact they do achieve in line with average non delayed summer borns is better than same kids would have achieved without the delay.

WhoHidTheStapleGun Thu 17-May-18 20:11:34

I agree you cannot draw that conclusion reliably.

I have still never met a child who was deferred. I believe in Scotland they have a well ran system and it is more common.

Any child who was deferred in the school year 2014-2015 had extreme (and diagnosed) support needs.

But let's all reduce children to their phonics score again sad

catkind Thu 17-May-18 20:26:37

But let's all reduce children to their phonics score again
I don't think that's fair. If you want to study the success of a system you need a measure to compare. Phonics test just happens to be what is available.

reluctantbrit Thu 17-May-18 21:34:58

I find the term “deferred “misleading, the study is a out children who skipped Reception altogether. Unless you do basic phonics and maths at home during the missing year most deferred children will have trouble catching up and no wonder they showing an improvement.

DD was in the first year where they didn’t stagger Reception anymore, all children were supposed to start in September. Our neighbour’s DD, August born, started only in January and the mum saw how much they had to catch up.

Either defer correctly like Germany does where children start then out of year group and continue their school life out of year group or do not defer at all.

catkind Thu 17-May-18 21:55:56

Are you sure reluctant? Looking at the file in the .gov link I think it is about children who deferred reception i.e. started in reception at just turned 5 instead of just turned 4. They're talking about whether or not authorities authorise requests, you don't need authorisation to start in year 1 at compulsory school age, only if you want them starting in R.

reluctantbrit Thu 17-May-18 22:11:54

Hm, just re-read the article. It says here “Children in England usually start school in the September after they turn four but parents of children born between 1 April and 31 August can request to delay entry for a year. Typically, this would mean a child starting school in Year 1, forfeiting Reception year.”

And later:

“We know the Reception year is an important part of school life and we want to make sure no child misses that year of their education because they have summer birthdays”

This looked for me that these are children who really skipped Reception.

I think delaying can be good but it doesn’t necessarily mean these children are superstars suddenly. And this is something parents with summer born ones need to remember. If a Summer born is not ready on September they are supposed to start doesn’t mean they are suddenly ahead of everybody when delaying Reception by a year. They may be just a couple of months older than the rest.

Naty1 Thu 17-May-18 22:38:15

Yeah i think it's deferred children starting in yr R.
I agree op. The kids will be including a mix of prem/behavioural issues/minor undiagnosed sen and also the report itself says most were jul/aug so scarcely older than the WB ones.
They will have done better than if they were there the year before.
I think if a child gets phonics the check would be easy - even in yr r. So it's really picking out the ones struggling.
Maybe later speech/issues with dressing etc more likely to be dyspraxic or dyslexic which may affect this particular test.
Also some developmentally delayed children will be more than 12m delayed so they will be worse off even than the SB in their new year.
If you were talking about children who were repeating yr r it wouldn't be surprisingif they only did slightly better than the youngest.
It may be on average deferred kids are ones who will pick things up more slowly, but like other SB kids it starts to even out later.
Also it's not like we expect all WB kids to get 100% on all tests. It's an average.
If all jul/aug were deferred in sure the picture would be different.
Also it's a limited test - only 40 Marks so the deferred ones doing well would struggle to balance out the ones struggling.
It also shows that not all the kids were struggling just because they were youngest so being a year older may help but wont fix everything

catkind Thu 17-May-18 22:46:42

The article is talking about children with delayed entry to reception. If you look at the questions asked of local authorities this is spelled out. It explains that this is something that can be requested and talks about the reasons parents give for requesting it and how likely different authorities are to agree. And then gives data on how such children scored on phonics tests.

If it was talking about entrance into year 1 the headline would be that children who skipped reception did just as well, not that they didn't do any better.

As the article explains, non summer borns did score (statistically significantly) better than summer borns. All else being equal, summer borns entering reception delayed a year would be expected to score as well or better than the non summer borns they are then older than. The fact that they still scored significantly worse shows selection at work. It wasn't a random sample of children held back, it was those whose parents thought and who the local authority agreed would benefit from it.

catkind Thu 17-May-18 22:49:08

It also shows that not all the kids were struggling just because they were youngest so being a year older may help but wont fix everything
X post, yes agree with this.

greenlanes Thu 17-May-18 23:26:52

I've been reading this report today. It is not very good quality and very targeted in terms of its outcome. I've been looking at summer born evidence on and off for approximately 10 years, I will be emailing the named researcher probably over the summer when I get some time. They are trying to imply that i this only well off middle class white Brits who want children to start at school,age 4 and that simply isn't true. Ask a slanted question and you may not get an accurate answer.

m0therofdragons Thu 17-May-18 23:34:27

I find this really interesting as dtds are prem but born 30 August. They're in year 2 so I'll be interested to see how they do in SATs.

Initially they struggled due to tiredness and would sleep on the way home from school, wake for dinner then go to bed by 6pm. Dtd1 often asked for bed at 4pm in reception. We didn't do any after school clubs. They're now above average. There are things they struggle with but their personalities are very strong. Someone has to be the youngest.

My personal belief is that without any Sen or additional needs a summer born dc has every opportunity to thrive. Each parent should be able to have an opinion however I'm concerned dc are very much babied to the point that they're held back. Maybe having a toddler followed by twins forced my dc to be independent but not being able to dress themselves at 3-4 years old when they're healthy able dc is alien to me. Holding a dc back so they'll be top of the class also seems more status led than in the dc best interest.

BubblesBuddy Thu 17-May-18 23:35:39

I would assume that many parents who both need to work to make ends meet want their children to start school. It is possibly the better off who can afford their child at home for longer or in nursery.

BubblesBuddy Thu 17-May-18 23:42:52

I have a DD with a late August birthday who was never, ever, tired and did loads of after school activities and went to bed at about 8. Summer borns are not all the same. I think children who defer may well be less mature and parents use “summer born” to explain this. It may not be this at all. Whether parents have done as much as they could do to prepare for school is another matter.

AvoidingDM Thu 17-May-18 23:49:25

Deferred entry in Scotland means starting school a year later, not skipping years.
The aim of deferring is to avoid putting children into school when they aren't ready for it, emotionally, maturity, ability wise, confidence etc.
Why put a child into a situation where they are going to struggle and possibly fall behind from the beginning when a year later they will do much better?

The majority of the children who are deferred are February born, so only a few weeks from the End of Feb cut off. What makes anybody think that a child's schooling should be a big black line on a calender??? Effectively Scotland has a grey period before getting to the black line.

greenlanes Fri 18-May-18 00:10:18

Just to say that starting a child age 5 in school s not holding that child back. That is very emotional language, if you choose to send your child to school age 4 - you are sending them to school before the legal school starting age in England and Wales, you are sending your child to school early, before they legally need to be there. That might be your choice to do that but that is not the legal requirement. English schools now start in reception. That is de facto changing the school starting age, against the trend of most other westernised countries of starting children in education at age 6-7.

So if you want to send your child to school at the legal school starting age then that should be into reception. The discussion about families not being able to afford is not appropriate. Nursery education is subsidised upto age 5. But it is only 20'years ago that any type of subsidy for childcare was introduced. How do people think we all managed financially before then?

AirandMungBeans Fri 18-May-18 00:19:58

I delayed my July born DC. He is in reception now, rather than year one. It was the best decision we ever made. He was so emotionally sensitive and immature when he should have started school 18 months ago, still struggling to separate at nursery, worrying endlessly about the smallest things, displaying anxious behaviour, very low attention span etc. He also has a neurological condition that requires lots of scans and hospital appointments, so time off school. The extra year, already afforded to his autumn born peers,to mature a bit did him the world of good and he started school a confident, happy child. He is still sensitive and anxious at times, but it's manageable. TBH, I wasn't too worried about reception, it was being just turned five in year one that worried me. I don't think he'd have coped with the added pressure, but this September I think he'll be fine.

In contrast, we haven't chosen to delay our youngest DC, he starts school this September ant just four, but he is a totally different child, confident and adaptable, whilst able to concentrate and very eager to learn. Every child is different and I think that a more sensible and flexible approach to school admissions for summer borns is needed across the board, some children will be ready, some won't.

TomMarkle Fri 18-May-18 04:15:41

There has to be a cut-off. Allowing so many deferrals is just pushing the problem onto someone else's child, so all the spring-born children are perceived to be at a disadvantage.

How is a system which permits a 17 month age gap between potential oldest and potential youngest, fairer than a 12 month gap? That's if April-borns are allowed to defer as per the guidelines.

The current system is the least unfair.

Imagine being the parents of an August child in school with a May-born who deferred from the previous year? It just increases the age gap.

TeacupDrama Fri 18-May-18 06:18:35

As deferring has been going on in Scotland for years they should be existing research, the cut off is29th February, most referrals are January and February born. Most councils automatically agree deferring those born in January and February but are more reluctant to defer December and November born while legally you can still defer the council may not find the extra year in nursery.

I get the idea generally speaking that referral is best for most February born but not best for those born earlier than end of December unless Sen, premature

In Scotland if you defer you stay in that year group throughout school so will leave later too

Personally I think referral should only be July August birthday

reluctantbrit Fri 18-May-18 06:32:39

OP-yes, you’re right.

DC is now in Y6, so I have seen quite a number of years in primary and how they develop.

You will always have children who are Autum/Winter born who struggle and Spring/Summer ones who flew through the 11+ and move to Grammar with no problems.

I found the biggest difference until around Y2 was general maturity, not so much academical. One of DD’s friend is 10 months older, September born to her July the next year. Both girls were roughly the same academically but when it came to social maturity there were miles apart.

I often wonder why England is so determined to start early when other countries start at around 6-7 and still manage to put the same curriculum in and have the A-Level at the same age.

captainproton Fri 18-May-18 06:39:42

My son is the youngest in the school. He was a prem baby too. I didn’t defer him, but he was very tired, he looked like a 3 year old, which he was one week prior to starting school. My concern with deferring was that he’d be the only one and as a shy child he would have struggled trying to break into established friendship groups.

First six months were tough on him but he survived. He is settled now and it’s taken until Easter. It helped that his school is a small village school and has quite a relaxed atmosphere compared to very strict local academy. They also spent all of September doing half days, the local academy just go straight into full days. That is brutal for August borne. His sister is also there in year above, which gave him emotional reassurance. They told me at parents evening he went to the toilet 9 times one morning so he could peek into the class next door and look at his sister. He’s a different kid now, would never do that.

I cried when he started school I knew he wasn’t ready. I really struggled with my decision.

Naty1 Fri 18-May-18 08:07:10

Starting at CSA is reception a year later.

I completely disagree that it is just moving the problem.
-because people are only delaying if they need to.
If being 12m younger doesnt matter then 17m doesnt matter either. Would you even be able to tell and why would you care?
That 17m older child could be developmentally delayed making then now just about bottom of the year group - rather than 24m behind the eldest.
I would prefer to have a child in my kids class who needs less support from tas etc so it is then benefitting all the kids.
Some kids may be due up to xmas even and yet were born prem in August. Is it fair for a '3.5yo' to be in with averaging 4.5yos?
Some kids are starting unable to speak clearly. Which is a risk to them, may affect their reading ability too. And their friendships as with big groups they may be left out.

Re the cost.
So parents couldnt have afforded it if the dc were born Sept and had to pay till 5!?! That makes little sense and as pp said school age used to be 5 with kids starting the term they turned etc which left SB behind from the start.
The 15/30hrs continues till 5 if you defer.

My jun born was 'school ready' in a sense, she could read a bit, dress. Couldnt wipe very well and i think was supervised in yr r with this (with another non SB girl), but the main issue was tiredness resulting in poor behaviour. She would have fitted much better into the year below. Despite probably being capable of doing the yr 1 reading soon after starting yr r at correct age.

Some kids nap til 4yo.
I think starting at 4 is just ensuring some kids are left behind and have to catch up later.
Dd missed the writing in yr r as she just couldn't do it. Suddenly at 5yo she could.
Maybe just £50k parents are more likely to have read about it in newspapers.

sirfredfredgeorge Fri 18-May-18 08:31:11

They are trying to imply that i this only well off middle class white Brits who want children to start at school,age 4 and that simply isn't true

No, they are stating that it's mostly well off middle class white brits who do defer the child, the stats back that up clearly. Given those advantages the 0.9 phonics is surprisingly low, the signficant advantage that group would normally have would suggest they would already be scoring higher than the average by at least that amount.

TomMarkle Fri 18-May-18 09:37:26

I just don't understand how people who are upset about an 11 month age gap between their child and potentially a couple of others are quite happy to create an even worse problem for other people's children in another year group.

Because if you put your August-born into the year below, you're making them 12 months older than someone else's child.

I have a colleague with an August-born and myself I have a September-born and my colleague constantly refers to the 11 month age gap between our children and how hard it will be for their child being "up against" children who are nearly a year older than them. Nothing about preparedness for school, only about the perceived disadvantage educationally.

I try to remind her that there will be children born in EVERY month in the year, that her child will mix with children who are also summer borns and that only a few will be 11 months older but it falls on deaf ears.

The 11 month age gap is the focus.

Naty1 Fri 18-May-18 09:42:21

Tbh i think the numbers would be much higher if people weren't concerned
with fighting for it
That the school may change head and dc be moved up or into an academy
Parents need to change school/area
Secondary school and grammars, possibly university.

If it becomes an automatic right that will remove these concerns.

I honestly dont think it disadvantages any. The numbers of kids in a year group are random. Your kids could be in a class of almost all late SB or all WB. More kids are born WB anyway.

The curriculum is not suitable for SB kids otherwise so many more wouldn't get the eyfs goals. Mainly writing.
But it is more than appropriate for the eldest.

The bigger issue is that schools may be manipulating the data as they want to show progress. SB kids show more progress. But from other threads schools use eyfs to predict the next stage, then yr 2 sat. And yr 6 sats to predict gcse results! Well that is completely unreasonable for the youngest who are on average behind at these stages. And clearly say 10/11 is much closer than 4/5 but 15/16 at gcse is even closer.
No wonder SB continue to do worse right through.
Who wants to choose at the start of school that their child has 10% less chance of going to uni?
Behaviour in school is more vauled than academic ability.
Logically they are just as bright just disadvantaged by being born wrong side of a man made cut off.
Adjusting results is one way. But this doesnt help all the other disadvantages like sports and friendships.

brilliotic Fri 18-May-18 09:47:26

This research allows zero conclusions as to if delaying is good for summer borns or not, IMO.

It does sort of indicate though that delaying reception start by a year is generally only chosen by parents/accepted by councils in cases where it makes sense, because they child really 'belongs' in the year below. Not in order to 'gain an advantage'. If the 'delayed' SBs achieve the same results as the non-delayed SBs (who achieve a lot worse than their Autum born peers), what would these children have achieved if they had not been delayed?

To me the fact that being oldest vs being youngest matters so much for EY and KS1 attainment indicates not that the cut-off date is chosen wrongly, but rather that the school starting age is too early.

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