Has anyone managed to get their DC to retake a school year?

(18 Posts)
Lorelei2 Thu 21-Mar-19 20:22:47

My DS (7) would greatly benefit from retaking a year in school. He's the youngest and just missed being able to be easily deferred by 2 weeks for when he was born. My DH and I agree that it would be the best thing for him to retake a year but we're concerned the school will not allow it. We're not sure why they were so against deferring him at the start of school. They said we'd need a psychological assessment and something major would have to be found amiss, however, when reading up about it we found out that it is possible to defer kids his age, would've needed good reason and the reason would've been that he just wasn't ready. He still isn't. He's struggling in class to cope with having to sit still and not achieving what he should be, according to his teacher. Sorry for long post, but just wanted to know if anyone has been successful in persuading a school that your child should retake?

OP’s posts: |
Hollowvictory Fri 22-Mar-19 12:33:15

Leas dont always want to pay for an extra school year but a private school may be more flexible

Witchend Fri 22-Mar-19 12:53:35

Generally once you've started in state schools it's not possible to drop a year.
You also need to think of the impact it could have on him if he stays at the same school. That wouldn't be easy on any child, I think.

PotteringAlong Fri 22-Mar-19 12:54:48

I agree; if you want to drop him back a year he needs to move schools.

annie987 Sat 23-Mar-19 07:42:28

We are a Local authority school and have had a few children repeat a year it’s in their best interests.
If really makes no odds to us as a school if the numbers in the year below allow it.
The only difficulty these children could face is that they will still leave us at 11 to go to secondary. They won’t stay an extra year so will in effect miss Year 6 completely.

twolittleboysonetiredmum Sat 23-Mar-19 07:48:31

Like another poster has said - it’s possible to allow them to ‘retake’ a year but they still go up to secondary with the age group they should’ve been in. Unless you can get the secondary to agree to them being a year back. We’ve had a few children (teacher) in this situation and have never known a secondary allow this. Despite severe needs in most cases.
How far behind his peers is he? If he’s struggling then his best hope is that his school will support him to catch up however they can afford to. If they can’t meet his needs, moving school than keeping him back would be a better consideration.

FamilyOfAliens Sat 23-Mar-19 07:59:52

Not being ready for school is extremely common.

Ask to speak to the Senco about specific areas he struggles with, and suggest ways you feel he could be supported, rather than just saying “he isn’t ready”.


strathmore Mon 25-Mar-19 16:57:14

Educational outcomes for pupils out of chronological age can be poor. They can leave school before they take any GCSEs, that is why LAs don't like it. Many have the rule that the child needs to be back in their own age group by the end of a key stage.

There is no guarantee that a secondary would take them out of chronological age and so they may have to go from Y5 to Y7 or more unusually from the Y6 class at primary to Y8 at secondary.

alwaystimeforcakeandtea Mon 25-Mar-19 22:52:45

If the school is full then they cannot put a Y1 or Y2 class over 30 pupils because of an older child re-taking a year. Is this the case at your child’s school?

lakeswimmer Mon 25-Mar-19 23:05:00

We kept DS back a year so effectively he did year 6 twice. He is young for his age, has a summer holiday birthday and a mild disability which means he needs additional support. Both his primary school and secondary school were totally supportive and the LEA had no objections.

It was definitely the right thing to do for him. Despite the fact that he's now the oldest in his year he is still very small and very young seeming compared to his peers. I couldn't see any real problems with it as he will still be sitting GCSEs at sixteen and A levels (if he does them) at 18. One factor in our favour was that he was at a small rural primary with mixed year 5 & 6 year group so he just stayed on with people that were already in his class, and that he was friends with, for year 6.

lakeswimmer Mon 25-Mar-19 23:07:35

I should add that we live in a very rural area with undersubscribed schools and so there weren't any issues with DS taking up a school place that could have gone to another child.

Itscoldouthere Mon 25-Mar-19 23:31:55

My eldest DS (now aged 21, late August Birthday, dyslexic) started school at 4, youngest in year, by Christmas of yr 1 he was becoming a school refuser. Moved him back in to reception and he stayed in that year group for the rest of his education.
This was in London, school suggested it and it was supported by LA, transfer to secondary was again supported by LA.
It’s been really helpful, he struggled with his dyslexia, but being oldest, rather than youngest really worked for him.
I would have been very unhappy if he’d needed to go back into proper year group for secondary school, that would have been awful.
If you are considering this make sure the school and LA fully support the move.
I know that my school and LA changed their policy and did not allow out of year pupils a few years after my DS was moved, I think this was because most schools were oversubscribed and they had no room to move pupils back a year.

AnemoneAnenome Fri 29-Mar-19 07:13:29

Is he at state school in England, or something else?

TillyTheTiger Fri 29-Mar-19 07:17:47

Join the Facebook group 'Flexible school admissions for summer borns' - there are lots of knowledgeable people on there who should be able to help you.

anniehm Fri 29-Mar-19 07:56:58

It depends a lot on what you mean by struggling and not being ready - not being top of the class, or genuinely struggling. There's a cut off date for holding back and hes two weeks older than that - this means he will be older than everyone in the class.
If you move areas it's easier to change years, in the same school they need to have a good reason eg missed significant school for medical reasons rather than the parents hoping their kid will do better next year (they may, but they may not)

ooooohbetty Fri 29-Mar-19 08:08:11

You can drop a year group. But the school is right in what they say about needing evidence that it's necessary. I've known it happen for children who've been ill and missed a lot of school. Plus you have to think about the embarrassment factor on your son. He's not going to move classes with his classmates and they are all going to know why. I think you'd be better off working with the school in supporting him in the year group he's in.

AnemoneAnenome Fri 29-Mar-19 14:26:31

That's true ooohbetty. I was a year ahead and the idea of dropping down a year was beyond imagination, really. Perhaps I just wasn't very imaginative.

StarlightIntheNight Sat 30-Mar-19 16:04:37

Yes, we did, but it was more complicated as my ds started reception at age 3 (October born). His school is mixed French and English system so complicated with admissions. But French side they do entry by calendar year so some kids start age 3! And British side by Sept to aug for admissions. My son managed to get a spot in the British side so was able to just repeat the year. It was the best decision we made as he is thriving. At age 3 he could barely write! Now he is definitely where he should be.

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