Plan for summer-born children to start school a year later delayed by fears their parents might play the system at best schools

The Telegraph is reporting that a plan to allow summer-born children to start school a year later has been held up by worries it will give unfair advantages to parents to win places at popular schools.

The Government last year said it would changed the rules to allow children born between April 1 and August 31 to start primary school a year later. This was to stop these so-called summer born children from feeling left behind in class because they are not as emotionally mature or developed as their peers.

However, the changes have been delayed because of worries that parents might try to play the system to gain an “unfair advantage” by applying for places at popular schools for summer born babies in two school years.

Schools minister Nick Gibb told MPs in Parliamentary debate said it was important parents were not effectively given two chances to get their child into a school of their choice.

However he said: “I understand that it is frustrating, but it is important that we take the time to consider carefully how best to implement the change, and how the new arrangements will be put in place.

“We will support summer children in the best way we can, but it is important that we also consider the wider impact of any policy changes.”

He said: “We need to ensure that parents do not use the flexibilities as a mechanism by which to gain an unfair advantage in the admissions system by applying for a place in the reception class of their preferred school for when their child is four, and again for when their child is five.”

More at: Plan for summer-born children to start school a year later delayed by fears their parents might play the system at best schools

Do you agree that there need to be precautions taken so parents do not abuse the system to get their child into their preferred school? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or on Twitter. ~ Sophie

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  1. RDut24

    SchoolsImprove #summerborn children can ALREADY start school a year later. When they start school isn’t the issue, its the forced missed yr

  2. E_VDG

    SchoolsImprove My LA told us to apply in year we did not want. But other parent do, because that’s SurreyCouncil #summerborn procedure is.

  3. MalcolmWilson01

    SchoolsImprove Isn’t it is as simple as “No you can’t come this year” and “No you can’t come this year either” if there aren’t places? /2

  4. MalcolmWilson01

    SchoolsImprove It strikes me that common sense is being thrown aside for fear of selfish parental pushiness. Gibb says “We will support” /3

  5. MalcolmWilson01

    SchoolsImprove when what he means is “I’ll continue to pass the buck to schools to support with no extra funding.” But hey, it’s education.

  6. Perhaps it’s time to consider starting formal education at 7 not the year in which children become 5.  Children could start informal Kindergarten during the term nearest their fifth birthday. and remain there until they are 7.  They would then progress to Year 1 of formal schooling.  This would allow all children to experience education which best prepares them for formal schooling.

  7. slr2679

    SchoolsImprove sb_campaign boltoncouncil policy states you have to apply for place you don’t want. The system’s to blame #summerborn

  8. MikesuziNZ

    SchoolsImprove why not try if you haven’t turned 5 by Christmas then you wait, at least you know all children will be 5 when in year r!

  9. lilsteg

    SchoolsImprove Not a difficult thing to prevent though. Parents want fair access 2 YR #soundslikeanexcuse #nottheparentsfault #summerborn

Let us know what you think...