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Taking reception child out of school while he's under 5?

(32 Posts)
stringerbell Mon 07-Sep-09 20:56:17

Message withdrawn

juuule Mon 07-Sep-09 21:11:18

If your child is enrolled at a school you have a legal obligation to ensure that he attends.
You could discuss flexi-schooling with the school to see if they would agree to him attending part-time.
Probably best if you discuss with the school.

Clary Mon 07-Sep-09 21:12:45

Yes that's true wrt legality of it.

I know someone who takes her children home for lunch one day a week. It works for her tho it's not what I would do.

He will miss out on learning and social skills and it will draw attention to him if he misses a whole afternoon. But I believe it is your right.

Are you sure you are doing it because he ants it or because you do?

Clary Mon 07-Sep-09 21:13:33

Yes as juule says, any arrangement like this would have to be with agreement of the school.

Tambajam Mon 07-Sep-09 21:18:46

My son's school had no problem with people doing this before the child turned 5. A lot of children in the class did only half days for much of the first term although officially they all started on full days. People continued taking occasional afternoons off throughout the year.
I don't think it's a pants idea necessarily though you need to chat to the school and get their input.
Sometimes the slot immediately after lunch is quite a valuable piece of whole class teaching. e.g. it was my son's 'phonics' session so it can be worth bearing that in mind. I sometimes took him after that slot had finished and the independent play had started.

stringerbell Mon 07-Sep-09 21:30:59

Message withdrawn

Clary Tue 08-Sep-09 00:00:51

yes almost certainly you can take him home for lunch.

I believe our prospectus actually says children can stay for school lunch, bring a packed lunch or go home.

As I say, almost no-one does nowadays (I did it for years as a child cause my mum was at home!)

stringerbell Tue 08-Sep-09 08:35:32

Message withdrawn

Rollmops Wed 09-Sep-09 13:07:57

Need some clarification regarding the official shool age in the UK. Does a child have to start school as soon as he/she turns 5 or does the child have to start the school while being 5 years old, i.e. before turning 6?
Thank you.

piprabbit Wed 09-Sep-09 13:14:55

Just wanted to add the Reception/Foundation year is very relaxed and not really much of a rat race IME. More like an extension of nursery, lots of fun and learning through play.

GooseyLoosey Wed 09-Sep-09 13:16:41

My dd was not 5 until the end of Aug. Whilst the school said that I could take her out if I wanted to, the teacher did say that this could be quite disruptive both for the individual child and the class as a whole. She preferred that the timing was agreed with her in advance and except where necessary (eg child too tired to stay in school) it was never one on an ad hoc basis.

LIZS Wed 09-Sep-09 13:17:48

They have to be in education the term after they turn 5. In practice they usually enter Reception during the academic (Sept to August) year they turn 5 and move to year 1 the following September - except in Scotland !

sherby Wed 09-Sep-09 13:23:22

I had this conversation with DD's soon to be headmistress.

She was aghast that I would even consider it and told me it was NOT something they would be happy with or allow hmm

DD was 4 end of June so very young starter. I was only thinking of two afternoons a week but was utterly shot down in flames!

Saying that, I didn't think I would get a good response. I know two other people who have flexi schooled their children and they really had to fight for it.

If I am correct before they are 5 they don't actually figure into the attendance stats so don't let them fob you off with that!

sherby Wed 09-Sep-09 13:25:15

Headteacher also said that it would be disruptive to the class and DD. That it would single her out as 'different' lol

And that she would also miss important literacy work in the afternoon (this was after telling me that all they really did was play in reception)

ksld Wed 09-Sep-09 13:28:57

Stringerbell - my sympathies - I felt just as worried and concerned as you when DS started reception in January, and am still all worried about him now in Y1!

DS did not settle very well in school so I took him home at lunchtime every day for a few weeks, and then twice a week and then once a week, and then he went full time. This was my suggestion, and I pushed for it as he was so tired and unhappy. I pointed out that he wasn't making friends or learning when he was so tired and crying, so he wasn't really missing out. However this was with the agreement of the teachers, and taking into account their views too. My impression was that the teachers would have been happy to leave DS being a bit tired and tearful and expect him to push through and get on with it, but they were also happy to accept I wouldn't leave him like that.

Hopefully your DS will settle and love it. I wouldn't plan on taking him out etc yet, just wait and see how it goes. If he seems to like school then he may as well stay full time. You can always keep him home on a Friday occasionally for a longer weekend break for him, just tell the school he is overtired so not coming in.

Most of all Good Luck with it - it's scary leaving them, but you have to pretend it's great for his sake! Don't peer in the window for too long on Monday - go and do something with your other 2 to keep yourself busy!

DaisymooSteiner Wed 09-Sep-09 13:30:50

Our local primary has flexi-schooling in place for all children in reception until the term after they turn 5. Many parents choose to take their children home before or after lunch to start off with and it works extremely well. Can't understand why every school doesn't offer this!

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lotkinsgonecurly Wed 09-Sep-09 13:42:30

I did this with my ds. The school were very accommodating and happy to support my decision to take him out 1 or 2 afternoons per week. I felt he was too tired to take on the whole school week at the time. However the last term he was at school full time as he had matured and wanted to stay for the whole school day. Speak to his teacher I found mine to be very helpful.

Tambajam Wed 09-Sep-09 19:16:44

Wow - schools vary so much.

Rollmops - It's different in England/ Wales and Scotland. I only know about England.
By law a child needs to start schooling the term after they turn 5. HOWEVER this is often not the practise around the country. In the majority of LEAs a child is expected to take up a place in the 'year that they turn 5' (year ends at the end of August). So a child with a late July birthday will start school just after they turn 4 and spend the whole of their Reception Year not being 5. Deferring a place is technically possible but it all gets very complicated.
Because under 5s don't count in legal figures schools have flexibility as this thread demonstrates.

HelenaBonhamCarter Wed 09-Sep-09 20:16:26

You need to get it in writing from the school that they are happy with this.

I made the mistake of taking it on a verbal agreement and it went tits up and we lost our place...I'm sure many schools will be happy with it though.

Good luck, I understand completely how you feel.

stringerbell Wed 09-Sep-09 23:03:39

Message withdrawn

Rollmops Thu 10-Sep-09 13:40:01

Sorry for the hijack stringerbell ...
Thank you for the replies Tambajam and Lizs!
If a child should, by law, start in January but school in question only accepts pupils in September, could I wait until the following September to enroll my child?
I am in no hurry to start them so young anyway.
Many thanks in advance!

Tambajam Thu 10-Sep-09 20:32:38

If they are meant to start in January as that is after they turn 5, you wouldn't be able to wait until the following September unless of course you wanted to homeschool officially.
In some areas you apply many months in advance using the LEA system. e.g. in my LEA I applied in November, heard in the Spring, DS started in September.
I suggest you call your local LEA Primary admissions officer and find out what happens locally.
You may technically be able to wait until your child is 5 but you could be taking a risk if schools in your area are very popular and oversubcribed.

katiestar Fri 11-Sep-09 14:25:10

They might not like it but they could not take any legal action against you because there is no requirement fo him to be in full time education.
I took my summer born DD out nearly every afternoon and occasionally a full day during the reception year.The school didn't like it but did concede that it was my decision

FabBakerGirlIsBack Fri 11-Sep-09 14:27:32

Register at our school and he will be mornings only until January.

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