Parents who have been fortunate enough to have their request for Reception class entry at compulsory school age agreed to are being warned about the risk of moving house.
The implications are real and serious (we already know children who have been forced to skip a much later year of primary school – where the DfE refused to intervene – and even the July 2013 advice even said “It will be for the admission authority of the secondary school to decide whether to admit the child out of their normal age group“; so a future risk even if parents stay put.
One local authority to warn parents has said, “I cannot envisage a problem whilst you remain with [N] County Council, however I cannot answer for other authorities. If other LA’s do not allow deceleration, your child will have to join the school in her correct cohort.”
This is a ridiculous situation for our education system to be in, and it actually beggars belief that the Ministers responsible for education – the same Ministers who want to see a ‘crack down‘ on school absence – can stand by and do nothing in the knowledge that children are forcibly being made to miss out on an entire year of curriculum study – against their parents’ wishes – simply because their parents dared to wait until their children reached compulsory school age before entering school.
We faced this issue.
We had a delay agreed easily by one LEA. The headmistress of our chosen village school was extremely supportive of the delay.
However we then had to move house due to my husband’s work.
We expected our new LEA and school to support the delay. However it took us over a year and a half to finally get our new LEA and school to agree to a delayed entry to Reception for our child.
Frustratingly, the two LEAs share borders, but had totally different views.
There appears to be many children who are suffering from a lack of accountability on this issue from the DFE. Failure to act is preventing children’s right to access a continuous National Curriculum (and the assessment targets within it). How this can possibility be in the best interests of the child as per the convention must be debatable on a point of law.
For example, if a child attains their EYFS goals at the end of reception then the expectation is that they go on to attain a 2b and level 4, respectively. How can this be achieved when they are missing an entire years worth of schooling/national curriculum? This will cause long term damage to any child’s education – let along vulnerable summer born children – and is pretty much indefensible. Where is the accountability DFE?
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