The DfE has published a new report this week:
“Delayed school admissions for summer born pupils Research report (September 2019)”
This follows its 2018 report, which the Summer Born Campaign reviewed here.
The 2019 report conclusion confirms an ongoing postcode lottery:
“Local authorities continue to be varied in their approach to granting requests for
delayed entry in reception. Some say they agree all requests, others ask parents to make
a case but say they are more willing than previously to grant requests and a third group
only allow delayed entry if a very strong case is made. Overall there has been no
significant change in the proportion of local authorities reporting each of the three
stances since the last survey (2017).
“It appears from the survey data and 2018 BBC report that the number of requests
for delayed entry increased between 2016-18 but the department’s latest survey appears
to show a plateau. The department will continue to run this survey each year to observe
whether a significant trend appears.”
* * * * *
Some important points to note in the 2019 report are as follows (my highlight):
“The survey was issued to all 152 top tier local authorities and 94 local authorities completed it.
“Of those 94 local authorities, 66 (although only 62 completed all questions) had
also completed the 2017 survey.
“Limitations of Data…
The survey only sought information from local authorities.
As set out in the Code, it is for a school’s admission authority to make a decision on whether to agree a request for delayed entry to reception.
For some schools, the local authority is not the admission authority and so is not responsible for determining the school’s admission policy.
As such, the findings are indicative, rather than fully representative, of the school admissions sector.”
The Summer Born Campaign again welcomes the government’s monitoring of what is happening with summer born admissions in England, and is currently looking at which local authorities completed these surveys, and what their approaches are.
This information will be published here as soon as possible.
- Written by author and journalist Pauline Hull