Interstate too they have a different entry system, with kids starting at the beginning of the year if they are going to turn five before the cut off date. Back when we used to only have three terms in the year the grade 7s were younger, like the grade 6s now as they could just do 1 term in rec and then go up. I think this is where the move the grade 7s up to high school has come from. Some teachers feel they need the bigger environment. A lot of English privates used to only start their senior schools at 13, with the prep schools keeping them til then. People used to have probs when they moved to QLD as school didn't start until 6 and their littlies would find themselves back in kindy. It doesn't really matter which environment your grade 7 is in, as a good teacher should be able to stimulate and excite their brains into retaining a little worldly knowledge and experience. Year 7 in primary though is an excellent year for lengthy discussions and debates as this is the age at which kids really begin to look outside of themselves and their families. This time is lost if crammed with the need for science labs and a more jam packed curriculum.