When the Telegraph’s Economics Correspondent Peter Spence tweeted his concerns about a potential middle-class advantage of planning a child’s DOB, it reminded me I’d read this while looking for alternative Surrey schools when our son was facing forced Year 1 entry at CSAge.
But what’s perhaps more interesting in the context of Education Committee Chair’s comments yesterday (“admissions decisions need to be made in the best interests of the child, not administrative neatness“) is just how vulnerable the education ‘system’ is to admin processes trumping children’s best interests:
The Good Schools Guide suggests, “The obvious remedy for this disadvantage is to allow those younger children who seem to be falling behind to drop back a year. This practice has never been popular in the UK, and was made particularly difficult by the government’s former practice (only abolished in 2005) of reporting schools’ GCSE and A-level results as if children who had been held back had failed all their exams, so that senior schools (conscious of their position in the league tables) became extremely reluctant to accept them.”
Ten years on, and some parents of summer born children have still been told by schools that this ‘reporting’ issue will impact transfer to secondary – and the Summer Born Campaign is aware of head teachers at secondary schools who have warned of and actually refused a summer born child entry to Year 7 from Year 6 because they ‘belonged’ in their chronological age group of Year 8.