This is very much on my mind at the moment, as a good friend of mine is being, essentially, forced to send her child to school even though he would have been in the year below if she had, to quote “managed to cross her legs another 24 hours”. This issue of him being a whole year younger than some of his supposed peers is only exacerbated by some personal difficulties that have recently been diagnosed as autism. When schools have so little ability (or desire) to be flexible in such cases then we really need new policies to be issued from the top down. In that vein, I have re-blogged an article by my colleague over in Redbridge discussing the school-starting age in this country. Would really love to hear your thoughts on this, especially if you’re personally affected.
Excerpted from the University of Cambridge article “School Starting Age: the Evidence“:
Earlier this month the “Too Much, Too Soon” campaign made headlines with a letter calling for a change to the start age for formal learning in schools. Here, one of the signatories, Cambridge researcher David Whitebread, from the Faculty of Education, explains why children may need more time to develop before their formal education begins in earnest.
In the interests of children’s academic achievements and their emotional well-being, the UK government should take this evidence seriously
– David Whitebread
“Back to School”. Homepage banner image by Woodley Wonderworks via Flickr Credit: Nick Page from Flickr.
In England children now start formal schooling, and the formal teaching of literacy and numeracy at the age of four. However, the UK’s Department of Education states clearly that compulsory school age is five. Children born in the summer…
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