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21st Sep 2018

Mum explains why she doesn’t want to send her 4-year-old son to school

Keeley Ryan

door stop

A mum has told how she is refusing the send her 4-year-old to school – and how he will spend his days  “playing, exploring and growing” instead.

Emma Hutchinson, who runs the blog Dirt, Diggers and Dinosaurs, explained her and her partner’s decision in a post called “Ready for Reception?”.

She began by explaining that her young son, Stanley, has a birth that falls during the summer – which would make him one of the youngest in his year.

And that is a huge part of why his parents decided he would start school when he turns 5, instead.

She began her post by explaining:

“We’ve done something that many of our friends and family will view as controversial.

“We have decided not to send Stanley to school this year. Instead, he will be starting next September when he is five.

“For the extra year he will be attending pre-school part time, playing, bonding with his brothers, playing, exploring, enjoying days out, playing, growing and developing at his own pace.

“Did I mention he will be playing? Afterall, it’s what a four year old does best.”

She continued by sharing a list of the questions they have gotten since they began discussing their decision to defer him.

She explained that “Stanley does not have any special educational needs” – and that it wasn’t a case of him struggling at preschool or “that we can’t bear to let him go, and I want to keep him a baby.”

Emma continued:

“The plain fact is, he’s four.

“I personally believe that in the UK all children start school too early and that we’d be better off following our European neighbours whose children start school at aged seven when they are emotionally and physically ready.

“Thanks to a change in DfE legistration in 2015, we not only have the choice whether to start his school journey prior to compulsory school age or at CSA but also currently have the right to request admission into Reception class at CSA rather than Year One, ensuring that he will not lose a vital whole year of early education.”

The soon-to-be mum-of-three added that they had recently been told Stanley would “soon cope with starting school, as he’s really bright.”

And that’s where she says it started too hit home for her.

Emma wrote:

“A four year old shouldn’t have to cope with anything!

“I want him to enjoy going to school, grow, thrive and shine. I definitely don’t want him to struggle to try and keep up with the other older children and have to cope the best he can.”

You can read her full post here