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Repeating Y2 but at another school

Discussion in 'Primary' started by sabrinakat, May 3, 2019.

  1. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    My little boy has struggled somewhat with his learning (he has been privately assessed with a form of a retention issue but high on verbal skills and processing: loves French, Drama, etc). He is in Year 2 and his school are suggesting he repeat the year (he does get 1-2-1 intervention but works at Year 1 in English/phonics/writing) and my initial thought was no.

    I worked with him a bit over Easter and can see that he needs specialised tutoring for some Y1 topics although we did do a bit of Y2 grammar but I am increasingly thinking that he might benefit from repeating the year....

    He's currently at a private school and there is a place at a good state primary nearby. We are seeing whether they would consider allowing him to go into Year 1 or Year 2 this school year. He does not have a proper statement as the NHS did not feel any significant issues but we did get him privately assessed.

    My main objection to him repeating was the psychological frustration of his friends moving to Year 3 but him not. But if he moves to another school, redoing the Year 2 wouldn't carry that social stigma.

    I am auditory dyslexic with some retention issues myself and even with an Oxbridge education and a PhD in History, I still remember my own mother refusing the school's request for me to repeat Y5 and in my case, she was right....but in my son's, I am not sure....

    Any advice? (My two SEN at my own school like my plan but I thought I would ask the primary experts here). He is a February baby but was born 5 weeks early so wouldn't be a year older if he were to repeat.....


    ps. are there any repercussions later, eg. having to start secondary earlier (I have seen some stories of children having to jump from Year 5 to Year 7 due to being out of year?)

    I am tagging @caterpillartobutterfly as I know she has lots of primary experience :)
  2. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

  3. abacus1982

    abacus1982 Established commenter

    I think repeating a year can only be done with the agreement of the parent. Personally I would only contemplate this if it was something the parents specifically asked me to consider. It is also not something that is generally recommended by statutory assessment team, at least not where I work anyway.

    The key thing you need to be aware of as a parent is that the vast majority of secondary schools are now academies. This means they set their own admissions. The impact of this is that when your child transfers to secondary school they can insist that they return to their chronological age group ie straight into Year 8. Not sure about the jumping straight from Year 5 to Year 7 but this is maybe the same thing.
  4. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Last edited: May 3, 2019
  5. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Interesting. It's his school, not us, that is recommending he repeat the year. Thank you for your insight.

  6. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    Yes I know just thought it would give you some more information.
    My experience of children repeating was a child repeating reception, he was a prem baby, another child with ASD remaining in KS1 rather than moving to Y3/4. This was in a small village school of 3 mixed age classes.
    Personally I don't like children repeating a year. Moving schools would solve the friendship problem of friends moving on and your child not. I think you would have to consult the school and the local LA as to what their policy on this is. You would also have to think ahead to secondary and whether this would create any problems when moving from Y6 to Y7.
    sabrinakat likes this.
  7. Wotton

    Wotton Lead commenter

    Is he only behind in English if so I wouldn't repeat.
    sabrinakat likes this.
  8. sooooexcited

    sooooexcited Established commenter

    With our medical recommendation I can't see how you would succeed. He is also only finding English hard and seems to be fine with his peers intellectually and emotionally so I would think that a decent y2 teacher who differentiates well would be enough currently.
    Fleecyblanket likes this.
  9. digoryvenn

    digoryvenn Lead commenter

    It is a difficult decision to make so I have some points for you to consider:

    If you move him to a state primary, he will have to sit the year 2 curriculum tests. Do you want that for him?

    Also, as he has been educated in year 2 in an independent school, year 2 curriculum in a state primary may be too easy for him.

    Do you wish him to return to an independent school in the future?

    Perhaps some extra tuition is all that is needed.

    When I was a head, we had a child repeat year 2 but he was EAL with limited English and he was 'immature' for his age.

    Good luck with your decision.
  10. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I wouldn't expect a state primary to allow a child to go in to the year below if their only issue was English/phonics/writing. Especially if he is working at a year 1 level, so only a year behind, at most.

    Repeating a year is something I would want to avoid if I was a parent. The social stigma might be removed by changing schools, but children chatter about age and how old they will be on their next birthday and so on, meaning your son will always be the odd one out. Teachers often split groups by age, for example 'five year olds can line up...now six year olds' and so your son will notice he is different very quickly.

    You also reduce dramatically the number of secondary/senior schools open to you, in both the private and state sectors.

    If the school are recommending a repeat of the year and there are only issues in one area, I'd be wondering what was going on. What was said at the end of reception and year 1? Did they not notice or suggest something then? Could it be that the year 2 teacher is simply not all that great at teaching differentiated English lessons and that your son will be just fine in year 3?

    If the difficulties are very significant, then sometimes learning support is better in the state sector, both in quality and availability. So the move might be positive, even if your son stays in his own year group.

    What notice do you need to give for removing your son from the school? In ours it is a full term, so you couldn't move him until Christmas, which would make life tricky if the state school won't hold a place.

    Lots to think about, but don't feel guilty whatever you decide.
    sabrinakat likes this.
  11. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    Thank you for all of your comments, I really appreciate them.

    I am leaning towards extra tuition and staying with his correct year group, moving during this academic year (private) to state. We can give notice at his independent and pay to the end of the academic year but move him after May half-term. (TBH, if pushed, could pay to October half-term/Christmas, if needed).

    I was at the beginning of the week, ok with repeating even if he moved schools but I think keeping in his own year group and moving him the best option as it is his English/phonics and writing at Y1 that is an issue, not Maths, etc.

  12. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Could your son's school be playing games?

    OGAT under fire for plans to make misbehaving pupils repeat a year
    SchoolsWeek.co.uk, 2nd May 2019.

    Were I in your situation I would keep my child to stay at his current school, finances permitting, while providing extracurricular support until his development catches up to his higher performing peers.

    Unless his current school is rubbish, of course, and has failed your son through incompetence &or ignorance. High proportion of SEN?
  13. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    Without repeating a year, I should say, @sabrinakat.

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