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Deferred entry when moving to Scotland.

(35 Posts)
HappyWombat Thu 22-Jun-17 12:42:35

I wondered if I could possibly have a bit of advice about school years and what I should do with my youngest daughter?

We live in Australia currently, but are moving to Scotland in about 10 weeks time, to Perth and Kinross area. We have two daughters. Our eldest is currently half way through Y6 here, which is equivalent to P7 in Scotland, and when we move over in early September, due to her April birthday, she'll be starting P7, having come from half way through the same year, which is great - it'll give her time to settle, get used to the new school and make some friends etc. No problems there

Our youngest daughter has a mid-February birthday. Here in Australia she is currently half way through Y4, which is equivalent to P5 in Scotland. However, because of the cut off dates, the school that they will be attending say that she needs go into P6, meaning that she will kind of skip ahead by six months. I had asked if we could put her back to P5 but they insist that P6 is the right year. She is pretty good academically, and a fairly easy-going kid, but I wanted to hold her back, so as to give her some breathing space and extra time to make friends, get used to the different way of doing things etc., bearing in mind that she has lived in Australia for 8 of her 9 years! She will be massively behind in things like history and languages (Aussie schools don't do any language in primary, and history/geography is very Australia-centric).

I'm not sure what the right thing to do is? She is one of the youngest in her year here (as she would be in Scotland P6), but because they start school in January rather than the August before, she is kind of six months behind. I'd rather she go back 6 months than go ahead by 6 months. Can I request that she is held back and do the school have to take my request into account?

SteamPudding Thu 22-Jun-17 14:04:59

I wouldn't worry about her being behind. The curriculum in Scottish primary schools is very fluid and topics seem to be at the discretion of the teacher. The emphasis is on fostering soft skills (co-operation, team work, building resilience) and cross-curricular working (making pizza in your maths lesson so you can do practical fraction work dividing it up - that was a recent P6 lesson) rather than acquiring knowledge. There is no systematic study of history, geography, languages or anything else in any of the four Scottish primary schools I have recent experience of.

Arkadia Thu 22-Jun-17 15:00:49

Oh dear, so they do sod all in P6 as well...

SaltyMyDear Thu 22-Jun-17 15:03:30

Yes. Y4 isn't really equivalent to P5. Its far looser than that....

She's best off being in the right age group so she can make friends easily.

Nyx Thu 22-Jun-17 15:06:01

My DD's in P6 in a Glasgow primary and they're doing French. They have also by this point acquired quite a bit of maths knowledge. You're making it sound like they're still in Nursery!

I would say that your DD will probably be ok in P6, OP, as it's not desperately 'academic' at that point, but neither do they sit and play with plasticine and finger paints all day.

Nyx Thu 22-Jun-17 15:06:49

Sorry, I meant that SteamPudding makes it look like P6 is still nursery level, not the OP.

TondelayaDellaVentamiglia Thu 22-Jun-17 15:08:45

is it a larger or smaller school?

there's lots of smaller type schools with combined classes so could be worth checking on the school roll for her age group.

TheDuckSaysMoo Thu 22-Jun-17 15:11:25

Born in Feb 2010 or Feb 2009. If it is 2010 I would push to have her held back as she'll be one of the youngest in her year. I have a Feb born dd and our school strongly recommended delaying entry for all Jan and Feb babies.

trixymalixy Thu 22-Jun-17 15:23:10

I would push to have her held back too.

umberellaonesie Thu 22-Jun-17 15:31:11

My Feb 2010 DS is going into p3 (we held him back) he is 7 @TheDuckSaysMoo

OP'S daughter must be a Feb 2008 if she is 9.
I have 2 Feb babies and held both back, wish I had been able to do it with my Dec baby he really struggled at exam time and his young age compared to his peers really showed.

WaxOnFeckOff Thu 22-Jun-17 18:32:12

If you'd have held her back here originally she'd be going into P5 in the Summer. Generally children coming from abroad would be put in the younger option (if there is an option). Is it that they don't have a P5 space?

A boy was put into DS2s class when he was in P5 even though the boy was technically order than DS1 (a year older than DS2). at the end of P5, they jumped him up to P7 and he joined DS1s class. Whatever year they put her in doesn't mean that's her set in that year forever and personally I'd rather they needed to shift her up than down. That can be more socially damaging imo.

HappyWombat Thu 22-Jun-17 18:46:06

Yes, she's Feb 2008. Both she and our eldest are among the youngest in their years here, but because eldest is an April 2006 birth day, she'll be going back, as it were, to become among the eldest. They've both struggled with things like sport, because they are far smaller than some of the other kids. It is more usual to hold kids back here though, which you can do if they're born between January and June, so some of the kids are more than a year older. Socially too there's a difference. It isn't so apparent with youngest at the moment, but has become so with eldest. I think I just want them both to be in the same position, among the eldest in the class.

The school has around 115 kids I think, in a mix of straight and composite classes. We do composites here too (youngest is year 4 in a 4/5 class) but they're split for things like science and sport.

MacarenaFerreiro Thu 22-Jun-17 18:46:10

I would push this quite hard with the school. I know anecdotally of children who are "too old" for their year but were put there because they moved from another European country and didn't speak much English. You know your daughter best and I quite agree that going forward she will do much better being one of the oldest rather than being one of the youngest.

You need to get your skates on though - most schools are in the last week of term and after next Wednesday you'll not be able to speak to teachers in schools.

If one school is being inflexible, is there another very close by which you could consider for both children?

TheDuckSaysMoo Thu 22-Jun-17 19:03:13

Oh yes, I did mean 2008 rather than 2010. Oops!

prettybird Thu 22-Jun-17 23:14:23

I'd definitely push to hold her back. Even if she is held back she may not be the oldest in the year - there could be December and January birthdays in her year who were also deferred.

I even know of someone at secondary who came from a European country (I think at a similar age to one of yours) who has an October birthday and deferred shock

I did the opposite in my teens. Went to NZ and jumped ahead 6 months. I'm an April birthday so was at the "old" end of the year (not many deferrals back in the ark in my time blush). It was hard - even though I'm clever if I say so myself wink I had to work really hard to catch up.

After 2 years we came back (which hadn't been planned). I went back into my original class in my old school, so technically went back 6 months, and I still had to catch up confused (only 6 months before my O Grades so I had a lot of work to do).

RandomlyGenerated Fri 23-Jun-17 09:50:30

I think you need to consider what happens at secondary level - if you planning to stay some time do you want her doing Nat 5s at 15 and a bit or 16 and a bit?

Arkadia Fri 23-Jun-17 10:02:48

Randomly, do you think it matters?

PacificDogwod Fri 23-Jun-17 10:06:42

Yes, I'd ask for her to be deferred too.
It's not 'holding back', it's 'allowing more time' grin. Spin is so important grin

I am sure she will be fine either way, but long term there are so many advantages associated with being amongst the oldest in a year group than the youngest.

Had she started school in Scotland, you could have deferred her, so I don't see why that should be different now.

OOAOML Fri 23-Jun-17 10:08:35

As a January birthday person, who sat o grades at 15, highers at 16 and CSYS at 17 then left school, I think it can matter hugely depending on the person. And obviously it can be hard to predict how someone will cope, but my experience (academically fine but socially/emotionally really struggled) would pretty much always make me lean towards deferring.

WavingBranches Fri 23-Jun-17 10:10:44

Quick point, I'll read full thread later.

Ask how many kids with January or February birthdays have deferred. My child as a December born was among the youngest in the year. All bar one of the Jan Feb kids deferred AND a December born one too!

WavingBranches Fri 23-Jun-17 10:17:11

It can be a pain later on not being 18 when your classmates are.

And it meant some opportunities were not possible at 17 leaving fewer alternatives to going to college or university.

OOAOML Fri 23-Jun-17 10:22:35

History/geography I wouldn't worry too much about having done Australia-centric, as it should be about the skills (forming a narrative, understanding why things happened) rather than the events. They may even use their knowledge in class - my son's school have been quite good at bringing in the different backgrounds and cultures of pupils.

Languages - I don't know about other areas, but here there is an official policy of two modern languages at primary but they don't do a great deal of them and it isn't very formal.

MacarenaFerreiro Fri 23-Jun-17 10:23:07

I think it's always an advantage to be one of the older ones in hte class rather than one of the youngest ones.

Arkadia Fri 23-Jun-17 10:26:40

That was my point... Why worry about something that might or might not happen years down the line when we have more pressing matters now?

Isadora2007 Fri 23-Jun-17 10:31:54

Many January and February Birthday kids are allowed to defer their entry nowadays. So I would agree with you and push for her to be allowed to be in p5.

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