Birmingham Mail says ‘Forcing children to start school in Year 1 is like hurling them into uncharted waters without a life jacket’

Birmingham Mail Education Correspondent Emma McKinney has written this excellent article, ‘Councils undermining parents if they force ‘summer babies’ to start school in Year 1‘, just a week ahead of ahead of the Education Committee’s one-off evidence session on the subject of starting school.

Emma says: “It is only right that parents of summer babies are allowed to postpone their child’s schooling… So it beggars belief that councils are then undermining these parents by forcing children who have delayed their start to school to jump straight into Year 1.Making youngsters miss reception – a crucial time in the early years curriculum when children learn the very foundations of learning to read, write and add-up – is utter madness.

Forcing them to start in Year 1 is like hurling them into uncharted waters without a life jacket.

And it flies in the face of the very reasoning behind the Department for Education’s guidance – which is aimed at allowing children to start school when they are ready so that they are set on a path to success.

All eyes will be on the government’s Education Committee now as it meets on March 4 to discuss this very issue.

Let us hope it has the common sense to close this apparent loophole and stop councils from forcing children who delay their start to school from missing out on reception.

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