Early Years Expert Supports the Summer Born Campaign

mine-bio-picAfter reading this guest blog by Mine Conkbayir, author of ‘Early Childhood Theories and Contemporary Issues’ and early years lecturer, researcher and NEYTCO training coordinator, I contacted Mine and asked her what she thinks about the issues so many summer born children are facing.

She told me: “I am very much in agreement about the detrimental effects of forcing younger children into Reception when they are not ready.

Children are not afforded the time to make the transition, often with detrimental effects on their emotional well-being. Continue reading

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Admissions Authorities with Automatic Summer Born Admission to Reception Class at CSAge

2016-09-15-16-35-00Here is a list of some of the councils and schools that now allow summer born children the automatic right to enter Reception class at CSAge – without any costly, combative and time-consuming requirements for parents to provide arbitrary reasons and evidence.

Also, unlike other admissions authorities, they do not require parents to submit a primary school application for age 4 entry while their age 5 entry request is being processed – there is no appetite or need for two bites of the cherry.   We say thank you to: Continue reading

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Irony as Lancashire Issues Most Fines For Children Missing School

img_4777This week (October 19), the Lancashire Evening Post reported that ‘Lancashire tops chart for issuing fines to parents if kids miss school’.

The irony of this is not lost on parents of summer born children, many of whom are fighting for their children’s access to Reception class at CSAge – instead of missing an “essential” year of education (DfE definition) and going straight into Year 1.

In fact it’s shocking just how many admissions authorities throughout the country are willing to fine parents on the one hand, while advising parents of summer born children that even if they do enter Reception class at CSAge, they will be made to miss a whole year of school later on.

The phrase ‘Robbing Peter to Pay Paul‘ comes to mind with Lancashire County Council:
Council Cries Poverty While Wasting £££s on Summer Born Admissions
LGO Finds Fault with Lancashire County Council’s Summer Born Admissions Process Continue reading

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LGO Finds Fault with Lancashire County Council’s Summer Born Admissions Process

IMG_0654The Local Government Ombudsman has upheld a complaint against Lancashire County Council, which was made by a parent member of the Summer Born Campaign.

In summary, the LGO concluded: “There was fault in the way the Council considered Mrs X’s request for delayed entry to reception for her daughter. It should arrange for her request to be reconsidered. There was also fault in the way the Council dealt with Mrs X’s complaint.” Continue reading

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Year of School Removed from Summer Born’s EHCP in Surrey as Ofsted and CQC Commence Joint SEND Inspection

sen-catherineWhen even a summer born child with special educational needs (SEN) can be made to miss a year of school – against her parents’ wishes – it’s clear that the DfE urgently needs to protect the educational rights of EVERY summer born child.

In the same week that Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission (CQC) are carrying out a joint inspection of the county’s SEN effectiveness, parents in Surrey have told the Summer Born Campaign that following a house move, their daughter’s adopted year group has been removed from her EHCP.

Eight-year-old (summer born and premature) Georgia started school in 2013 at CSAge, and in 2015, a ‘non-chronological’ year group was included in her Education, Health and Care Plan, to ensure she wouldn’t be made to skip a whole year of school in the same way other summer born children have. Continue reading

Posted in EXAMPLE CASES | 15 Comments

DfE Disappoints and Digresses – Again

IMG_2181Despite the valiant efforts by MPs who fully support the Summer Born Campaign (thank you ,  and ), Nick Gibb MP delivered a disappointing (and for many parents, devastating) response to their questions about when the DfE’s promised new Code consultation will begin, and when the #summerborn postcode lottery will end.

You can read the full transcript here (or watch again here), and the Campaign will publish a full response to the ‘concerns’ raised by the DfE via Mr. Gibb ‘in due course.’

A few links to consider in the meantime however, are these:
*Campaign Does Not Support “2 Bites of the Cherry” for Summer Born Children
*Cost of DfE’s Code Continues: Repeating Reception is the Latest Summer Born Scandal
*Money Talks: Could the publication of SEN costs FINALLY mean Fairness for Summer Born Admissions?
*Vital Link Between Improving Mental Health, Delaying School Start of Youngest Children and Reducing NHS Costs
*Council Cries Poverty While Wasting £££s on Summer Born Admissions
*More Broken Promises – this time Empty Election ones from Conservative Education Secretary
*Investigation of SEN misdiagnosis should include DfE’s role in ‘Correct but Avoidable’ diagnosis of Summer Born children
*Is it all about the (EYE) money, money, money?
*DfE Promised Flexibility but Look what it Chose to Change in the Code
*Education Committee Recommendations Miss the Mark – 2014 DfE Code and Advice ARE the Problem so Why Recommend Further Implementation?
*2014 School Admissions Code Press Release
*Many Ministers have Talked the Talk – Could Nick Gibb Actually Walk the Walk?

Posted in CAMPAIGN UPDATES, MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT, THE DEPARTMENT FOR EDUCATION | 18 Comments

Due Date Demands Add Unnecessary Administration to Summer Born Admissions

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London Evening Standard 10/10/2016

The Summer Born Campaign has said this before and will say it again – if ALL summer born children are given the AUTOMATIC RIGHT to enter Reception class at CSAge, this will include those children born prematurely in the months of April, May, June, July and August.

And more importantly, it could also help those children born prematurely in the months of January, February and March via the existing provision under section 2.17 of the School Admissions Code (albeit currently underused), which allows for children to be educated in a different year group.

There is also the question of how administration of ‘due date’ would work?
Would children born overdue in September be allowed to start school one year early? What would decide a child’s due date? Menstrual cycle? Scan dates? What would the mediation process be (disagreement is rife in maternity wards on this point already)? What level of medical records would be required as proof? What about children who are not born in England? Would translation services be required to ascertain their due date? Continue reading

Posted in CAMPAIGN UPDATES, MEDIA COVERAGE, MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT | 1 Comment