This was a Q&A on summer born admissions in Parliament yesterday (Hansard HC Deb, 4 June 2018, cW):
Tracy Brabin Shadow Minister (Education)
“To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the reasons for the increase in the number of school start deferral requests for summer-born children between 2015 and 2017.“
Nick Gibb Minister of State (Education)
“The Department recently published a research report on delayed school admissions for summer born pupils, available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/summer-born-children-school-admission.
The report includes the findings of a survey of local authorities. The findings show that there has recently been an 84% increase in the number of requests for summer born children to be admitted to reception, rather than year one, at the age of five. Such requests represent 0.5% of the five-year-old population, and 75% were granted.
The findings also show that there are fewer requests made in areas where the local authority’s policy is only to grant requests supported by strong evidence, and there are more requests in areas with a higher proportion of granted requests. The report suggests this may be because parents are more likely to submit a request if they believe there is a higher chance of it being granted. The increase in requests may also be due, in part, to greater awareness of this option amongst parents. The Department remains committed to amending the School Admissions Code to ensure summer born children can be admitted to reception at age five where this is what their parents want.”
You can also read my appraisal of the DfE’s May 2018 report here.
With thanks to Tracy Brabin MP for raising the issue.
- Pauline Hull, author and journalist