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Deferring/holding back a year

(15 Posts)
boobybum Sat 20-Apr-13 00:46:04

Evening all,

I was just wondering if anyone had managed to get their child 'put back' a year at school?

Our DS is due to start reception in September but due to the fact he is an August baby and has autism, we would really prefer that he goes into school nursery instead as we just feel he isn't ready for school yet and the extra year could make a lot if difference. We would want him to be permenantly held back, ie we don't want them to try and make him skip reception and go straight into year one.

We are in the process of getting his statement so what I would really like is some good arguments/evidence to help support this.

Thank you in advance.

seaweed74 Sat 20-Apr-13 07:20:04

Not sure how much help this will be to you as we're in Scotland.

Dd1 is a January baby and here Jan/Feb babies would be youngest in a year group. The council is legally required to provide an additional year of preschool education if parents wish to defer their children and delay entry to school. Children born between Sept and Dec could apply for a deferral but the council isn't obliged by law to fund an additional year.

Dd1 has autism and one of my arguments for deferral was to give her a chance to build her basic skills eg manage stairs, self feeding with a spoon, possibly toilet train, so that there would be a better chance of her being able to attend mainstream with support. Dd also was not attending a full nursery session (only there for 2hrs not 2 1/2)at the time of application for deferral and has 1:1 support as otherwise she would not be able to access the facilities to support her learning experience.

I'm sure someone with more knowledge will be along but maybe something above helps.

thesecretmusicteacher Sat 20-Apr-13 19:19:11

It can be done. Search education for discussions between me and a poster called tiggytape

messmonster Sat 20-Apr-13 21:03:38

Hi booby we've done this for my DD. She's starting this coming September but ought to have started last September.

We made a case to our LA Ed Psych and she then supported our request. We also got the school we wanted her to attend (our village school where our DS attends) onside and they supported the deferral.

We also provided a clear plan of what we wanted to work on in the deferred year and how that would help her at school.

This worked for us in the end but the initial conversations with our LA SEN Officer were not promising - there's definitely a preference not to do this.

messmonster Sat 20-Apr-13 21:10:00

similar thread which might be useful....

lougle Sat 20-Apr-13 21:18:14

The new School Admissions Code makes allowances for this. It's at the discretion of the LA/school, but allows for complete deferral/advancement rather than deferring and skipping a year or advancing then repeating a year.

I think an August child with SN could really benefit from deferring and staying back a year. Any 'social' issues that LAs come up with as a reason not to do this wouldn't really matter to a DC with ASD. (Such as teasing for being older than everyone else, small issue in the grand scheme of things and only 1 month older than the rest, anyway.)

You need to get this written in to his statement as a recommendation from the EP or autism outreach etc. It used to be a lot easier to arrange before the infant class sizes were set to 30, even without a statement, but if you get it written in, you should be fine.

schobe Sun 21-Apr-13 09:12:10

We've just got DS put back a year and he has a May birthday.

Our LA contact told us that it is at the school's discretion (formally the governors'). So getting the school onside would be the most important thing if that is the case (have no idea if true but they were very clear about it).

If you're going to encounter resistance though I guess, as always, it's about evidence collection. Comparing the stage he is at and the demands of Y1 and showing that his needs would not be met where they would in reception.....somehow!

SingySongy Sun 21-Apr-13 09:49:49

I don't know the answer to this, but do you know what happens at the other end of the school career? Ie, when your child hits sixteen, but is at the end of year 10, rather than year 11, would they be allowed to continue for the extra year?

DC have to stay on until 18 these days and can stay up until 19. The worst that might happen is that they might only get 2 years post GSCE rather than a possible 3.

thesecretmusicteacher Sun 21-Apr-13 16:05:49

The fundamental point for me is that good teachers can adjust the curriculum but they cannot change the character of the peer group. A child with mild ASD may be ready to make friends but the friends need to be developmental peers not age peers..... otherwise it's more like making sibling relationships with older/wiser kids (still valuable but not the same thing).

From what I understand you need to do as Lougle says and start from (and stick to) the admissions code itself rather than asking the open question "can we defer?".

BLISS (premature babies charity) is currently campaigning for the guidance that accompanies the Admissions Code to be revised and this has relevance to kids with developmental issues also.

boobybum Mon 22-Apr-13 10:12:36

Thank you all for your replies. We are meeting with the Ed Psych next week so will be trying to get her on board. Although given the fact that she has said DS will never catch up (not why we want to delay school entry anyway) and that she doesn't see the point in doing cognitive assessments (as in her opinion IQ never changes) I won't hold my breath!

Toni27 Tue 23-Apr-13 09:23:06

Good luck. As my ds has his birthday in march I was told that he cannot be put back a year. Getting advice from a solicitor now to see if this is the case, I can't believe they won't let him start school a year late just because his birthday is not in the summer. He has asd, limited vocab, sensory issues and is still in nappies. Just found out he has been granted 21.5 hours support out of 36 and not all one to one, I'm absolutely fuming about it and am going to start pushing for him to start a year late ie sept 2014 even if it means getting legal people involved.

Tiggywunkle Fri 03-May-13 17:43:27

I am going through a similar situation.
We recently moved from one LEA which welcomed us keeping our DS back a school year (July baby) and then him moving up each year with his new peer group. Our new LEA are totally anti it - as are the schools etc. Even parent partnership doesn't think we have a hope :\
But yet when you speak to individuals eg his paediatrician and Ed psych, they are all for it. So I am trying to get each individual to say their piece and hopefully it will all come together for DS (not) starting school next Sept (but the year after). Apparently having the paediatrician on board is a big plus. Parent Partnership said there's some part of the SEN code of conduct where it says in an ideal world all children should stay in their peer group so out LEA keep quoting this and saying that they are following good practice! I keep arguing that one year would make a big difference developmentally, and I will keep on doing so. He's only 6 weeks older than some of his peers in the year below.

Meanwhile apparently there is no legal age for a child leaving primary school. However it would need writing into a statement that the child would stay with their peer group into secondary school, or you could find they skip a year at 11 and go into the second year of secondary school. Equally apparently there is no funding for the child to do the last year in school ie at 17, but I just argued that we will talk about that in 14 years time when the world is a different place!! He's not going to be academically brilliant so its not a major worry of mine!

MummytoMog Fri 03-May-13 19:12:12

We were told no as well. DD was born at the end of August, but doesn't actually have a diagnosis, so probably a less strong case.

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