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Moving a summer kid down a year. Can it be done?

(41 Posts)
HelpPleaseSendChocolate Sat 06-Jun-09 20:26:58

I want to move my DSs from Home Ed to School, but REALLY want my summer-born boys to go into a younger year. It's not working! Has anyone managed it? Any advice gratefully received.

seeker Sat 06-Jun-09 21:15:47

I don't think it can, sorry. The years are pretty inflexible. How old are they?

HelpPleaseSendChocolate Sat 06-Jun-09 21:28:19

Thanks Seeker. Aged 8 nearly 9, should be year 4, and aged 6 nearly 7, should be year 2. Following the Steiner curriculum, they are probably both about 3 years behind State school system. But our credit is crunching, so I need a job!

Clary Sat 06-Jun-09 21:30:10

I would say it's very difficult.

I do know someone whose DS is in the "wrong" year at school - he is end-August born (about the 25th or so) and they really had to fight to get him into reception as opposed to Yr 1 in Sept when he was five and a week.

The only reason they managed it is because he has SEN - general developmental delway as well as mobility issues. It's a good thing they did in this case.

Do your DSs have any kind of special needs? I think otherwise you will struggle. But have to add I also don't think it will be a problem. The brightest most sociable child I knew in FS2 last year was an August b/day.

How old are yr DC?

Clary Sat 06-Jun-09 21:32:19

Oh sorry I see you have posted ages while I waffled.

3 years behind really? You might be surprised. 3 yrs behind for yr 2nd DS would mean he was neither writing nor reading anything, ie was at pre-school stage.

Yr 2 at our school (for example) has a massive range.

stillenacht Sat 06-Jun-09 21:34:30

I am going to do it with my DS who is currently in year 5 at state school (very late August birthday) and once he has finished year 6 at state school he will transfer to an independent school (which is 4-19) to redo year 6 and go through to year 11. I am doing this for obvious age reasons (he is the youngest in the year and quite immature in some ways), for familial reasons (he has a younger brother with SN) and because as a teacher i know he will be at an advantage giving him extra time at primary

seeker Sat 06-Jun-09 21:34:49

I have a year 3 boy - could you say roughly where they are at and maybe I can reassure you?

Noonki Sat 06-Jun-09 21:41:49

my dss is a summerborn and was very far behind at school when he was younger, he also is dyslexic so this didnt help.

but now he is 12 he has caught up pretty well,

I think socially it is better because otherwise they may feel (when they realise they are in the 'wrong' year) as if it is because they are a bit thick.

Clary Sat 06-Jun-09 21:43:35

yeah, wot seeker said (as usual)

I have yr 5, yr 3 and yr 1 children and know well what FS2 and Yr2 can do at our school so maybe can reassure you as well.

JLo2 Sat 06-Jun-09 21:56:16

You definitely can do it, but most education authorites don't like it, so be ready to be very determined and pushy hmm Having said that, don't feel you have to just because they are 'behind'.

stillenacht Sat 06-Jun-09 21:56:20

I wouldn't let my son repeat a year within his same school so that his classmates move up and he stays down - that would have all sorts of repercussions i think(I don't think its too bad for Year R or poss year 1 but not higher up) We will be moving DS to a new school where indeed there are already 3 out of 18 who are in the 'wrong' year.

HelpPleaseSendChocolate Sat 06-Jun-09 23:20:17

Wow! Thanks for all your messages! Good 'ere, init?

DS1 - age 8-9 - has only been writing for 2 years! Can just about write a sentence or two, with large-ish letters; and probably can read 100/200 words. He's fine about being in a year below, as always was at Steiner.

DS2 - age 6-7 - never done any writing/reading at all. Was due to start Steiner school, but finances won't allow now...

Eeek! What do you think?

JLo2 - interesting to hear that you think it is possible. Guess I'll have to get pushy!

HelpPleaseSendChocolate Sat 06-Jun-09 23:25:15


No special needs!

Stillenacht. Your DS's new school - is it State school?

Clary Sat 06-Jun-09 23:35:15


Honestly? yes I think you are right they are a long way behind in at least 2 of the 3 Rs.

But that doesn't mean they won't catch up quickly. Presumably they have been learning lots of other stuff while being HE-ed? (what then?)

Has yr 7yo never done reading or writing because he doesn't want to or because you don't want him to IYSWIM? What I mean is, has it just never come up? Because if so, and he actually started, you might find he would zip through it in no time and quickly get up to speed?

My DD is in yr 3 where you were wanting to put yr DS1; to give you an idea she can read books like Roald Dahl /Secret Seven etc; might write a story that took a side of A4. She is able in literacy tho.

DS2 is in yr 1 then - he could write quite a detailed report (say 5-6 sentences) unaided (if he was interested enough! might have to be about football) with lots of spelling mistakes phonetci spellings and no capitals unless I reminded him. He can read a simple chapter book (Horrid Henry standard) but often out loud rather than to himself.

Sorry for long post. Not trying to scare you - just inform! But I bet you find they are able to catch up quickly. Lots of people say children esp boys shouldn't start reading until they are 6-7 and then they get it really fast!

trickerg Sat 06-Jun-09 23:58:06

It can be done, but would advise against it. Generally, children plateau out around year 2,3,4, and it may cause MAJOR HEADACHES when your child reaches Y5 when all peers are transferring to secondary!

HelpPleaseSendChocolate Sun 07-Jun-09 00:01:15

Clary - Wow! Your DS2 can write a report! How old is he?

If we could send DS2 - 6/7 year old - to Steiner - not reading/writing is fine. So I've kept him back. He'd love to copy his older brother and write.

Is there any hope????

DS1 - nearly 9yrs - maths is fine. It's a strong part of Steiner curriculum.

Good to hear that it's ok for boys to start to read at 6-7. Phew!

Clary Sun 07-Jun-09 00:21:18

DS2 was 6 in April.

He filled in a holiday diary over half term (I have to remind him to do it) and a typical entry is "we went to sudberry we did the teddy bare traial. We made a teddy bare finger pupit myn was a soeper teddy finger pupit" [his spelling not mine smile]

Not sure if that qualifies as a report! but I would say that standard was not unusual for his age.

If yr DS2 at 6 is keen to learn to read and write I would certainly let him. But I don't know much about Steiner schools.

LadyGlencoraPalliser Sun 07-Jun-09 00:36:06

I have summer born girls of the same age as your DSs and I would say that your problem is going to be that even if you can persuade a primary school to take them a year below the year they 'should' be in, you are very likely to run into huge problems when making the transfer to secondary school. You need to enquire about your Local Authority's policy, but where I live they are absolutely inflexible about keeping them in the 'correct' year group which means either they skip year 6 and go into secondary school after year 5 or do year 6 in primary and go straight into year 8. Neither of these courses is to be recommended, IMO.
Perhaps your LA is less infexible but you need to find out before making any decisions.

stillenacht Sun 07-Jun-09 06:56:35

no my DS will transfer to independent to repeat year 6 (its gonna cost a fortune but i feel he has more of a chance doing it this way-in fact its one of the main reasons we are going privately cos the state system wont accommodate this) and then go thru to year 11.

plusonemore Sun 07-Jun-09 07:34:53

havent the government said they want to give parents/schools more flexibility over august/september children? so might not be an issue by the time they transfer to secondary

when i taught y1 i had a girl repeat the year (she was an elective mute for first 2 terms and hadnt been to school before) she stayed in the same year when transfering to 2ndry but i seem to remember she had to do sats at the proper age

Goblinchild Sun 07-Jun-09 09:27:52

I've taught children who have transferred from the local Steiner schools to mainstream.

Socially and emotionally they were very mature and able to articulate well beyond their peers, but academically there was a huge mismatch.
Having to explain to a Y5 girl why she can't write in green crayon was interesting. She wouldn't accept a green pen either.
I think you need to be really aware of how frustrated and bewildered your children may be, you may have to put in an enormous amount of emotional support at home to enable them both to cope with the challenge of being in a totally alien environment for them.
That will be more stressful for them than catching up with the writing and numeracy, and learning that there are rules and expectations that have to be met rather than argued about or 'doing your own thing'
Has the school you are thinking of putting them in had any experience with Steiner children? Their teachers would benefit from reading up on the curriculum and philosophy of Steiner before they start, so they can understand where your children are and what their understanding of education is.

FruitynNutty Sun 07-Jun-09 09:31:26

The little boy (Not so little anymore!) I used to nanny for was held back a year as he was so young for his year (15th August) but that was at a private school. No idea how of if it works at a state school?

Buda Sun 07-Jun-09 09:37:48

Where in the country are you? I think Leeds and Bradford are more flexible.

foxinsocks Sun 07-Jun-09 09:38:28

if the 6/7 yr old wants to write, he'll be fine. Dd at that age (August born) when she was in yr 2 wasn't writing anything more than single words (as were a fair few of the August children) and some of the summer boys were only just starting to read. I'd start him now though if you can, especially if he's keen.

mrz Sun 07-Jun-09 10:24:58

If LAs allow it in primary (I've only known it allowed for SEN reasons) It can become an issue in Secondary where schools/LA may insist on child rejoining their own year group ie. missing out Y7 or the child having a year less in school ie. leaving without completing final year.

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