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  1. #31
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    In Vic the first year of school is prep and if you turn 5 before April 30 you can start at age 4 (the youngest you would start is 4y and 9m. You must start in the year you turn 6 at the latest.

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    We are in QLD, but I have one 5 days before the cut off (started school at 4 1/2) and one 6 days after the cut off (started school 5 1/2).

    Socially emotionally the difference is huge. They are now going into year 4 and year 6. My younger DD who started at 4 1/2 is much more immature socially than my older DD was. The difference between her and and older school friends is rather large at the moment. Academically she is at the top, so the school is never going to repeat her.

    Looking at her now, I wish I had put my foot down and held her back. I was in a similar situation and had to repeat year 6 so I flat out refuse to repeat any of my children after prep/kindy as it was a horrible experience.

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    I am an advocate of sending kids when they are ready. However, the big problem with NSW is that most parents seem to keep kids back. I have heard of December babies being the youngest in the grade.

    It could become a problem when he hits highschool as the gap in maturity may widen somewhat.
    Last edited by SSecret Squirrel; 25-01-2016 at 16:18.

  4. #34
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    The year before grade/year 1 is called 'Foundation' in the National Curriculum and the hope was that all states would change the name of that year to that. My school officially refers to it as foundation, however after decades of calling it 'Prep' that name still mostly gets used. WA, I believe, changed to a June cutoff to bring it more in line with other states, ditto moving year 7 to secondary school.

    As a teacher, it depends on the child and what is typical in the area.

    Teaching in WA where delaying entry is not done, you knew in Pre-Primary (Foundation) there would still be wet pants and some kids falling asleep during after-lunch story time. It was just normal!

    In Melbourne it is more common to delay entry than not. But a Prep teacher doesn't have a full time assistant (they do in WA) to help with changing wet pants and unzipping lunchboxes. So I can understand why.

    It was an adjustment for my December baby DD though who went from being in the middle age-wise to one of the youngest. Academically she's fine, 6-12m ahead. But all her closest friends are also the younger ones. She starts in a 3/4 class this year (grade 3) and it will be interesting to see how she goes as grade 4 girls can be witches-with-a-b (I think its the hormones!).

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    Default Parents with kids starting school at less than 5yo

    Sorry my 7 month old replied with some random text, not sure what she wanted to post!

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    OP IMO a 5 in July baby is very very young. The youngest I've seen has been a few June kids, and yes they have all struggled socially (and a couple have struggled academically, but that's probably just the individual child). A July baby will be 4 for over half of their first year of school! Of course it depends on each child, but I do feel that July is usually too young.

    FWIW I also have a July baby who went when she was 5.5, she has gone so so well. I never considered sending her at 4.5, it's just too young IMO. Sure she would have coped, but being that bit older, she has thrived.
    Last edited by CMF; 25-01-2016 at 16:22.

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  8. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jontu View Post
    I am in nsw. Ds will turn 5 in July and kindy is the first year of compulsory formal schooling. I have the option to start him 1 year later.
    At my kid's primary school the youngest kids were born in March for all of my kids years. So, given our school, if that was my child i would most definitely wait the extra year, as my child would be 4 months younger than the youngest child in their year. I have quite a few teacher friends, and they have all kept their child back, even the teachers at my kids school kept their kids back and started them a year later...pure anecdotal evidence, but it says a lot to me.
    I was an 'early starter,' and based on my personal experience I'm very much a believer of starting them older, rather than younger. I would be very undecided if they were a Jan or Feb baby, but a July baby would be a 5.5year starter for me, no question...no matter how 'ready' they were at 4.5. For me, it's much more about them having the maturity to make life decisions and handle huge amounts of pressure in the later years of highschool. How a child is at 4 can not predict how they will be at 16/17/18. I survived school just fine theoretically, but I really think I could have used the extra year of maturity for highschool...but when I went to school it wasn't the done thing to hold a child back.
    Last edited by Full House; 25-01-2016 at 18:59.

  9. #38
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    My child is right on the cusp, they have to be 4 before April 30th for preschool and 5 before April 30th for kindy (first year of primary) and he's born in April. Every school I've enquired about has suggested unless his daycare thinks he's really ready, to hold him back. So that's what we'll do. Quite a few primary teachers have told me they can do ok in kindy/prep but when they get to year 2/3 you can notice a big difference in maturity.

    Each kid is totally different though. Im sure some kids would be ready and do just fine.

    I don't think it's just the 60 minutes episode it's been the trend in Canberra for quite awhile.

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    Quote Originally Posted by babyno1onboard View Post
    In QLD the cut of is 30 July so half the class will be less than 5 when they start prep which makes me thinks is pretty normal/standard.
    OP is in NSW and parents can choose to send them to school or not. It's not compulsory to send children the year they turn 5 in NSW, as long as they start the year they turn 6.

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    Just a junior primary teacher's perspective here... I can generally pick the children who are on the younger end very quickly and without being told. Its not only socially, but academically too and its very apparent in Year 2.
    This is often magnified with boys, as girls can generally cope with sitting quietly and listening at an earlier ago.
    I guess with a 4.5 year old, do you want him to always be 6-12 months younger and less mature than his peers? Or give him the extra year to be 6-12 months older and more mature than most of his peers.
    Good luck with your decision OP!

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