snifter

A plan (of sorts)

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    So, we are pretty much set for our move. Just the final date to decide on.

     

    The one sticking point is when to time it for school. We have a school in mind, have been in touch etc and know whats what with enrolment. Only we can't decide between flying over for the start of term 4 beginning Oct 14 or waiting possibly a week or two more and missing 2 of the 9 weeks of the final term (my visa is due to be granted by a date in Oct but its after Oct 14, hence the possible delay).

     

    Basically we have found out that if son were to start school next Jan he would automatically be put in reception as this is what the new system will have in place. Even after doing a full year of reception and a term of Y1 in the UK. Because of the new cut off from 2014 he would be in reception. Fair enough, its how some other states work it and it is at least clear cut and the same for everyone (state system, not private).

     

    The only way round this (which was always our plan anyway) is to come over in time for him to do a term in reception and be assessed by the school and then all being well be placed up with those that will have done 3-4 terms of reception and go into Y1 in Jan 2014 with them. He misses the age cut off by 10 days and its at the school discretion if he goes up so we are hopeful as he'll be coming over after a full year of UK reception and about 5-6 weeks of Y1 behind him. We plan on continuing doing some work with him over the summer hols here and also have been checking out the Aus curriculum so we can be prepared. I know its a case by case basis so we can only hope for the best.

     

    My main concern is do you think it would be detrimental to miss the first week or two of term 4 (he'd still do at least 7-8 weeks of the 9 week term)? Or won't it make much difference. I just really want him to settle well and have the best chance to go into Y1 in Jan 2014. He's done really well at school here and I am pretty confident he'll stack up alongside the children who have done 3-4 terms of Aus reception coming off the back of a whole year of YR and a bit of Y1 here.

     

    Thanks in advance :)

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    A long time ago, when I was 10 , I arrived in Australia at the end of October. I started school about 3 weeks later and had about 4 weeks tile the end of the school year. I made a few friends, worked out what was what and went up into yr 6 the following school year. I would say it wont hurt him at all. If the school is happy to accept him whenever you arrive then chuck him in asap. Considering the time he has already spent at school then I'm sure he won't have any problems. Plenty of time during the school holidays for exploring and he may have found a few possible friends by then too. Also as the children who start school in term 4 will still be settling in I'm sure it will be fine.

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    A long time ago, when I was 10 , I arrived in Australia at the end of October. I started school about 3 weeks later and had about 4 weeks tile the end of the school year. I made a few friends, worked out what was what and went up into yr 6 the following school year. I would say it wont hurt him at all. If the school is happy to accept him whenever you arrive then chuck him in asap. Considering the time he has already spent at school then I'm sure he won't have any problems. Plenty of time during the school holidays for exploring and he may have found a few possible friends by then too. Also as the children who start school in term 4 will still be settling in I'm sure it will be fine.

     

    Thanks Rach :)

     

    I'm more worried about his not going up to Y1 in Jan 2014 than I am anything else. I know its a case by case basis and all that so even though I am pretty confident about how he'll do and that he will be on more or less the same level as those who would have started in term 1 or 2 I can't help but still worry. If they insist he has to repeat reception over again for a full year before going up to Y1 I think we'd look to moving him over to a private school. Its frustrating he misses the cut off by 10 days but this is also the thing that gives us wiggle room on him going to Y1.

     

    The school is happy to accept him whenever, its just trying to time it all to hopefully work out for the best. I don't know how well they will be able to assess him properly or for him to settle. He's an outgoing, confident kid and adapts well to new things and places and is looking forward to it. We had thought repeating reception over again for a full year would be an ok thing for him but seeing how well he has done at school so far and his term reports and so on we are feeling more and more he'd do better in Y1 in Jan as he is reading very well, writing has come along great and he is coping with everything brilliantly. He's a May birthday child who is currently in the younger end of his year group anyways (only half a dozen kids or so younger than him with June-Aug birthdays) and doing just fine with it all, so as time has gone on I've become a lot more confident and happy he will be fine going into Y1 sooner rather than later. If for one second I felt he'd not cope with it I'd not try to go for it but hubby and I are both sure its the right thing to aim for for him.

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    If the school has already said they will take him in term 4 and move him up as a year 1, then I wouldn't worry about missing the first couple of weeks of term. I would just make the plans that best suit your family. You are lucky, the schools in our area point blank refused to accept my child in the similar circumstances :( I moved my kids school this year and they missed a week at the start of term, then a couple more kids joined a week or so after - its no biggy here. (as I am sure you already know).

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    Guest Guest12727

    what age is he turning next year? Do consider the consequences as he gets older if he isn't in the same age range as the rest of his peers.

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    My son's a May birthday too Snifter - and because he started school in the UK just after his 4th birthday, he is now one of the youngest in his year group. I was a bit concerned about social issues, such as his classmates being able to learn to drive before him etc etc, but it doesn't seem to be an issue (he's in Year 11 now). The ages within a school year do seem to vary a lot - my daughter left school at the end of last year, and some of her classmates who are now at Uni have still not turned 18, or only recently turned 18. Hopefully a good school will be able to assess your son as an individual, but if this isn't possible in the state system, then perhaps the private system might beable to oblige. You can only get here when you can, so deal with it at the time - you've probably got enough other stuff to stress about!:smile:

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    Given that your son is just at the start of his school life I'm not sure it'll make all that much difference in the long term.

     

    We arrived last July but didn't put the children (then aged 11, 10 & 7) into school until the October term started. They started in years 6, 4 & 1 respectively and when the new year started they went into 7, 6 & 3... the 10 year old is the youngest in his year by almost a year (he's a September birthday and there's one other girl in his class who's birthday is the May) although his class is a mixed 6/7 and the 7 year old (is now 8) and again is one of the youngest - most people in her class seem to be turning 9 this year and hers is a straight year 3.

     

    My point is that it seems to me they move children up and down through the school years to suit ability rather than necessarily age, which is a good system I think. I shouldn't make it one of your main worries - you can only come when you're ready and do what you think would be best once you're here. It'll all work out in the long drag of schooling :)

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    Guest Adelaide_bound

    I was involved in quite a long running and very well regarded academically study in the UK looking at the best and worst of schools and how much influence it has on kids education/learning/development - whilst its not relevant here in terms of how much difference a UK school makes, the basic bottom line findings that a primary school has only a 5% influence on kids (ie the very best UK Primary School has only 5% better outcome than the very worst UK Primary School).

     

    I'm not explaining it very well (very very stressed and very very tired right now lol), but basically, his primary schooling doesn't make a huge amount of difference, its how much input the parents have that really makes a difference. So basically its all down to age and where he falls age wise in relation to the rest - if he is very much younger (a whole year younger? don't know where his birthday falls compared to 'normal' class requirements etc) than the rest of the class if he goes in next year, then thats not fab, but at the end of the day that could happen anyway (I remember bizarrely at one of my schools everyone had their birthdays at the start of the school year, then nothing from Nov to mine in May than then one girl at the very end of August), so kids being spread out happens. Again, its not the end of the world.

     

    Basically don't sweat it, he will flourish and thrive as long as he has a loving and interested home life, and if he needs tweaking later for any specific reason, then that can happen with a change of schools or just if its needed at his 'current' school. Too tired to make much sense, sorry - just don't panic, all will be fine :) Just get here when you can and what will be will be - kids bounce after all :)

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    what age is he turning next year? Do consider the consequences as he gets older if he isn't in the same age range as the rest of his peers.

     

    He will be 6 in May next year. He misses the cut off by 10 days. So if in Y1 would be the youngest in his class, if stays in YR in 2014 will be the oldest.

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    Guest Guest12727

    Sounds like he will be just right to be in Y1 in 2014. As others have said, I doubt it will make any difference if he misses a couple of weeks of term 4 this year. I think the schools are used to kids starting throughout terms, either due to house moves or immigration. This was very common at my son's school. They obviously understand your situation and will still have plenty of time to assess him.

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    Given that your son is just at the start of his school life I'm not sure it'll make all that much difference in the long term.

     

    We arrived last July but didn't put the children (then aged 11, 10 & 7) into school until the October term started. They started in years 6, 4 & 1 respectively and when the new year started they went into 7, 6 & 3... the 10 year old is the youngest in his year by almost a year (he's a September birthday and there's one other girl in his class who's birthday is the May) although his class is a mixed 6/7 and the 7 year old (is now 8) and again is one of the youngest - most people in her class seem to be turning 9 this year and hers is a straight year 3.

     

    My point is that it seems to me they move children up and down through the school years to suit ability rather than necessarily age, which is a good system I think. I shouldn't make it one of your main worries - you can only come when you're ready and do what you think would be best once you're here. It'll all work out in the long drag of schooling :)

     

    Thanks for the reply :), I think I am trying to get my head round the new intake system in 2014 and the changes to the education system. The one intake per year will change the moving up and down year groups in the early years as I understand it children will go into their intake year group regardless and flexibility to move up or down will be reduced. But that we'd stand a better chance of moving him back a year then trying to move him up once the new intake system is in place.

     

    Also the curriculum and how it is taught is changing so how things are currently might not be how they are in the future as the changes are rolled out and come into effect in the classroom. I like what I know of the Aus system, in many ways more so than the UK system, I like there appears to be more freedom and flexibility but changes are kicking in and not sure what impact that will have in the long term. Can only wait and see :)

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    If the school has already said they will take him in term 4 and move him up as a year 1, then I wouldn't worry about missing the first couple of weeks of term. I would just make the plans that best suit your family. You are lucky, the schools in our area point blank refused to accept my child in the similar circumstances :( I moved my kids school this year and they missed a week at the start of term, then a couple more kids joined a week or so after - its no biggy here. (as I am sure you already know).

     

    They have said they will assess him which we are happy with. I just want there to be enough time for a proper assessment to be made to ensure he goes into the best year for him in 2014. If we all feel that would be reception over again, so be it, but Y1 is also being looked at carefully by us.

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    My son's a May birthday too Snifter - and because he started school in the UK just after his 4th birthday, he is now one of the youngest in his year group. I was a bit concerned about social issues, such as his classmates being able to learn to drive before him etc etc, but it doesn't seem to be an issue (he's in Year 11 now). The ages within a school year do seem to vary a lot - my daughter left school at the end of last year, and some of her classmates who are now at Uni have still not turned 18, or only recently turned 18. Hopefully a good school will be able to assess your son as an individual, but if this isn't possible in the state system, then perhaps the private system might beable to oblige. You can only get here when you can, so deal with it at the time - you've probably got enough other stuff to stress about!:smile:

     

    My hubby was the very youngest in his year group all the way through school as he is a June baby so started later in the year with the Aus intake in term 3. He was exceptionally bright and only did 2 terms of reception and then went into Y1 with all the kids who had done 3 and 4 terms. And stayed there throughout just fine, more than fine in fact.

     

    I think the new intake is what I am trying to get my head round for the longer term impact. I have been told its going to be they go into their correct year group for their birthdate based on the cut off and that is it. So the age range will be a lot more definite each school year from 2014. Hence us trying to work out and have the school assess him properly so we can make the right decision before 2014 school year starts when it will be a lot harder to move him up (and possibly down) a year group.

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    I was involved in quite a long running and very well regarded academically study in the UK looking at the best and worst of schools and how much influence it has on kids education/learning/development - whilst its not relevant here in terms of how much difference a UK school makes, the basic bottom line findings that a primary school has only a 5% influence on kids (ie the very best UK Primary School has only 5% better outcome than the very worst UK Primary School).

     

    I'm not explaining it very well (very very stressed and very very tired right now lol), but basically, his primary schooling doesn't make a huge amount of difference, its how much input the parents have that really makes a difference. So basically its all down to age and where he falls age wise in relation to the rest - if he is very much younger (a whole year younger? don't know where his birthday falls compared to 'normal' class requirements etc) than the rest of the class if he goes in next year, then thats not fab, but at the end of the day that could happen anyway (I remember bizarrely at one of my schools everyone had their birthdays at the start of the school year, then nothing from Nov to mine in May than then one girl at the very end of August), so kids being spread out happens. Again, its not the end of the world.

     

    Basically don't sweat it, he will flourish and thrive as long as he has a loving and interested home life, and if he needs tweaking later for any specific reason, then that can happen with a change of schools or just if its needed at his 'current' school. Too tired to make much sense, sorry - just don't panic, all will be fine :) Just get here when you can and what will be will be - kids bounce after all :)

     

    Thanks :) I realise that primary isn't where it really matter so to speak. I have always maintained so long as our son is happy at primary school level then that is the most important thing. I believe a happy kid will thrive at school regardless of their academic abilities and all that. He doesn't have to be the brightest in his class or the farthest ahead or anything, just so long as he is learning well for himself, happy and liking being at school, that is the main thing for us. However, having said all that lol, I don't want him to be bored or not challenged enough either. So trying to get the balance right. Lots of changes ahead in the education system there and its all a bit unknown for everyone right now.

     

    Y1 in Adelaide in 2014 will mean he will be the youngest, he'll have only missed the cut off by 10 days. So yes, some kids will be a whole year older, some only a few weeks. Atm he has kids in his UK class who are 8 months older than him at most. He's doing just fine in with that age range.

     

    We plan to go private for senior school and would perhaps move him to a private school a bit sooner if we felt it would be better for him. Hubby would love him to attend the senior school he went to, and having visited it, so would I but who knows :cute:

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    Guest vikkiann

    Our daughter started reception in UK in 2011, we moved here in 2012 and she started reception here in term 3 because she was 5 in June 2012 they wouldn't accept her until term 3. Because she had only done 2 terms the school wanted her to do reception again in 2013. I really didn't want this because she was way ahead of he classmates.

    After lots of umming and aarghing i went with the schools advise.

    I was also of the opinion that i would move her to a private school but now that we are coming to the end of term 2 I'm so glad that i listened to their advise. She is ahead of her peers but is also 1 of the youngest in her class. She is taken out of the class during certain lessons to enable her to move further forward.

    I was worried about the impact it would have on her with being with older kids (later on in her education) but also the impact if she was bored.

     

    Its such a tough call, my daughter will have done the equivalent of 2 1/2 years in reception by the time she starts year 1 but hey, she'll be 1 of the smartest kids in her year!

    We also plan to go private for high school.

     

    Good luck.

     

    Vikki

    xx

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    Aside from academic ability you also have to consider emotional maturity and how grown-up the child is. My son's birthday is the end of July, and although he kept up academically at school in England (being the youngest boy in the class), it wasn't great for friendships or self-confidence, always being the baby of the class. Here in Australia he is one of the older ones (but by no means the oldest) his self-confidence has grown dramatically and he has loads more friends than he ever had in England. I'm sure he could cope academically being a year higher, but I can see he is happier where he is. During the transition from child to teenager I have also been glad that he hasn't been mixing with kids much older than him, although I know you can't shield them forever from all the bad influences of the teenage years! When he started high school it was the 2 youngest boys he knew from primary (who were still 12) who seemed to cope the worst with the transition.

     

    If your son is only 10 days short of the cut-off then it's not as if he will be a lot younger than many of the others in his class. All children are different - as you say if you put him up a year and he copes OK that's fine. If he struggles you still have the option to put him down. There are pros and cons to both options.

    Edited by Anne B

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    Our daughter started reception in UK in 2011, we moved here in 2012 and she started reception here in term 3 because she was 5 in June 2012 they wouldn't accept her until term 3. Because she had only done 2 terms the school wanted her to do reception again in 2013. I really didn't want this because she was way ahead of he classmates.

    After lots of umming and aarghing i went with the schools advise.

    I was also of the opinion that i would move her to a private school but now that we are coming to the end of term 2 I'm so glad that i listened to their advise. She is ahead of her peers but is also 1 of the youngest in her class. She is taken out of the class during certain lessons to enable her to move further forward.

    I was worried about the impact it would have on her with being with older kids (later on in her education) but also the impact if she was bored.

     

    Its such a tough call, my daughter will have done the equivalent of 2 1/2 years in reception by the time she starts year 1 but hey, she'll be 1 of the smartest kids in her year!

    We also plan to go private for high school.

     

    Good luck.

     

    Vikki

    xx

     

    Thanks for this :) Really appreciate hearing your experience as you've not long been there and so its all recent for you guys.

     

    You are exactly where we will be if son does YR again next year. He'll have done 2.5 years of reception (as well as 8 weeks or so of Y1 in the UK before leaving lol) if he repeats a year in 2014. Atm the school we are keen on has mixed YR/1 classes and all being well will do so again next year (depends on numbers I am told). So even if he stays in YR he could potentially be doing some stuff from Y1 if its felt its needed or would be a good thing for him.

     

    The school are open to both options and will assess and discuss with us so we will see when the time comes. I had long thought he'd do reception all over again and so on but as his school year progressed here I've wondered about Y1 being more of an option to consider.

     

    How did you find things like reading and writing when she stayed in YR? Son is on one of the higher levels of reading atm, has completed all his keywords booklets this year and his writing has gotten really good, far more controlled and able to write much smaller size and all that now. Also is spelling words himself and writing short (short lol) stories etc. They've introduced science this term also which he is loving. And have done a fair bit of work with money, coins and so on and how to add all those together to pay for things.

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    Guest vikkiann

    With regards to reading she is on level 10, most of her class are on level 2 and 3. 1 boy on her table is on level 1!!

    Sights words she is in 180+, again higher than most.

    Some of that is because I put the work in with her and you can spot the kids who's parents don't even read with their kids.

     

    When she started the school they were amazed that she knew all her phonics! It's definitely a more laid back way of teaching here.

     

    The 1 thing that has come on in heaps and bounds though is her confidence because she doesn't struggle at all. She went to a friends house and was reading to her!!

     

    Like I said before I was worried about her doing reception again but she's doing fantastic.

     

    Only you know what is best for your child. Maybe when you visit the school again ask them what they are learning in reception and year 1 to try and see where your son will fit in.

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    Thank you everyone :)

     

    Just to let you know, we've booked our flights and will be arriving in time for the start of term 4. We'll have a bit of time to get over jet lag and relax a bit before the term starts which will be fab. Mini holiday as son would be coming off the back of a term in the UK and only a couple of weeks short of their half term break. He'll have a long weekend off before we fly, a long weekend once we land.

     

    Hubby and I have talked about what people posted here, which was helpful and gave us differing POV to consider (some of which were similar to our own, some not) and taking on board everything we are happy to see how it goes and if he ends up doing reception over again and spending just over 2 years all up doing it, then so be it. It will come with its own advantages and will all even out in the end.

     

    Its so hard when trying to work out the best way to go for a child on the cusp so to speak. If he'd been a few months younger I'd probably not have even thought about it. And if older he'd go into Y1 regardless, but being where he is, its that awkward time.

     

    Will let you know the outcome of where he ends up once we've started school and he's settled in :D

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