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  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by kw123 View Post
    I don't think it's fair on kids to be starting school with kids who are so much older or younger tha they are.

    I don't think it's fair to expect teachers to have the skills to be able to teach children in a Prep skill who are such different development stages. Which is therefore also an issues for the schools generally. As someone mentioned, 45 mins reading circle might not be ideal for 4.5 yr old whereas it probably is for nearly 6 year olds.

    All of these things have a flow on to us in the community. Those who want to start their kids at the earliest opportunity feel that they cannot do so, as they don't want their kid to be in a class with kids 18 months older than theirs. And I believe the segment about this on the Project said that the vast majority of families who "delay" are from higher socioeconomic backgrounds, probably because they can afford the extra year of daycare or kinder or whatever. That's not right or fair.

    And I know this will be a wildly unpopular view but I find the idea of kids being 18 and just starting year 12 really weird. And I think that means some kids could be turning 13 in primary school? Again... Weird. Far too old I my opinion. But kids do tend to be "kept" as kids longer in Australia than elsewhere.
    A teacher will have huge range of abilities even if children are all the same age and they will have to cater to all of them. That point is moot.

    I teach year 1/2 at the moment and they are doing short, sharp reading lessons that are 10 minutes in groups of 2 or 3. If a teacher is teaching anything for 45 minutes they will lose the students whether they are 4 or 44.

    It's interesting you mention the recent project segment as the guest they had on the show, Dan Haesler who is a teacher is a friend of mine who advocates for children starting the year they turn 6.

    If a child turns 6 in the first year of school, they will turn 12 in the last year of primary school.

    Not sure what you mean about being "kept" but out of the top 10 ranked oecd countries in education, all have a later starting school age than Australia.

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  3. #62
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    The other thing is that even though parents in NSW have the choice of keeping their children home another year, only 11% of boys and 7% of girls are "held back"

  4. #63
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    I agree with you that 4 is generally too young for school. I think it should be when you turn 5, you start the following Jan.

    By being "kept" I mean that kids stay at home a lot longer here generally than in other countries. They do not have to lead normal adult lives until much later than people in other countries.

  5. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by harvs View Post
    I'm cynical but I think it has to do with moving families out of government rebated childcare as soon as possible. Just like raising the school leaving age keeps people off the dole for as long as possible.
    Call me cynical too but I think you've hit the nail right on the head here harvs

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    Quote Originally Posted by kw123 View Post
    I agree with you that 4 is generally too young for school. I think it should be when you turn 5, you start the following Jan.

    By being "kept" I mean that kids stay at home a lot longer here generally than in other countries. They do not have to lead normal adult lives until much later than people in other countries.
    As BigRedV mentioned above, the OECD countries rated the top 10 for education ALL start formal schoolig at an older age than we do here in Australia. Usually around age 6-7 years old.

    Personally I think doing school is blo0dy hard work! I dont think a year 11 or 12 kid is 'not engaging in the real world'. When I was doing year 12 at age 17, I was at school from 8.45-3.15 all day,not bumming around, but working d@mn hard. Then I would work at a part time job from 4-10pm 2 nights a week. The other two nights I woule do homework/ assignments from around 4-10pm. I would have fridays nights 'off',usually having fun with friends, & then saturdays I would do a 10 hour shift again at work. In total, part time work was always over 20 hours a week. Sundays I would have church &then more study/ assignments Sunday afternoons for 5+ hours. So out of school homework was around 15+ hours a week. I don't think I could do it now. Then I was also expected to help out around the house too. School kids don't have it easy, IMO.

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    I'm not disagreeing with any of that.

    I just think there needs to be consistency. That's all. Make it 5 or 6 or whatever, but make it consistent. And that goes for consistency between states as well.

    I'm not advocating for 4 year olds to all be shoved into school and given hours of homework... Ive clearly stated that I think 4 is generally too young.

    Anyway I'll leave it there. I'm hoping some people at least read the article I posted but I won't hold my breath.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kw123 View Post
    I'm not disagreeing with any of that.

    I just think there needs to be consistency. That's all. Make it 5 or 6 or whatever, but make it consistent. And that goes for consistency between states as.
    I do agree. My opinion is that children should start school the year they turn 6, possibly with Jan-Mar babies the option of the year they turn 5, but for 6 to be the preferrable 'norm'. Unfortunately most parents push for an earlier start, &I think it has a lot to do with the cost of daycare as @harvs said earlier - cost for both parents and government.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cheeeeesecake View Post
    I do agree. My opinion is that children should start school the year they turn 6, possibly with Jan-Mar babies the option of the year they turn 5, but for 6 to be the preferrable 'norm'. Unfortunately most parents push for an earlier start, &I think it has a lot to do with the cost of daycare as @harvs said earlier - cost for both parents and government.
    ETA - the article you posted confirmed that research suggests that later entry is beneficisl to students. It was not written by an educator, it was one person's opinion of why she was annoyed parents are 'keeping their kids back' - because it benefits those who start school later, so she was annoyed those kids do better at school! Ridiculous.

  12. #69
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    Quote Originally Posted by BigRedV View Post
    The other thing is that even though parents in NSW have the choice of keeping their children home another year, only 11% of boys and 7% of girls are "held back"
    Now I'm lost again. Do you mean the majority still start the year their child turns 5?

  13. #70
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonja View Post
    My son started preprimary this year and was 4. He's thrived. He loves it. He wants to go every day if he could.

    I think making generalisations about how anyone's child will cope with school is extremely unfair. In the right environment and the right school kids can do very well.
    Sonya, (unfortunately, in my opinion) prep classes in vic look very different to pre-primary classes in WA. WA there is an Education Assistant in the class all day. This does not happen at all in Vic. If an assistant is there it is because a child has funding (eg. In WA you would then have 2 assistants). That extra person in the room can deal with toilet accidents, opening lunchboxes etc. Plus it means as a teacher it is much easier to run a play based program as you have someone to help set up and pack up all the activity stations.

    Also, every school I have been to in WA has toilets either in or directly adjoining the PP classes so you could supervise toileting while still teaching.

    Finally, having 4yo/15hrs Kindy in school prepares the kids so well for full time school. The transition is so smooth.

    If I was still in WA, DS would start full time school the year he turned 5 in June, so at 4y 7m and I would have no concerns. I would not feel the same about him starting in that year in vic (he will start a year later due to cutoff here).


 

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