Delayed entry to reception for summer born children

Summer born children

Summer born children are defined as those born between 1 April and 31 August who reach compulsory school age at the beginning of September after they turn five years old.

Whilst most parents of summer-born children will be happy for their child to start in Reception at the same time as other children of the same academic year, some may have concerns about whether their child is ready for school.

This currently provides parents with the following options.

Deferred Entry

Parents may defer their child’s admission to primary or infant school until later in the school year, but not beyond the beginning of the first academic term after the child’s fifth birthday (the time when the child reaches Compulsory School Age, CSA) and not beyond the beginning of the final term of the school year of which the offer was made.

Alternatively, a parent has the right for their child to be admitted on a part-time basis during the Reception year but not beyond the point that they reach compulsory school age. In both cases a school place can be held for the child until they take it up.

The arrangement to defer a child’s entry must be made with mutual agreement between the school and the parent.

Delayed entry

Some parents may elect for their child not to start reception in their correct chronological year group. A request can be made to delay your child’s start until they are of Compulsory School Age. This would normally mean that the child would make an in-year application to enter school directly into year 1.

Some parents may wish to request their child is admitted to Reception instead of Year 1, so they would be educated out of their chronological year group. In such cases the decision that must be made by the admission authority, is whether it will be in the child’s best interests to start in Reception or to miss Reception and to start in Year 1.

A parent must consider that the child would generally remain out of their correct chronological age group throughout their schooling and consider how this could impact any future applications.

Please see government advice for parents.

Next Steps

Whether you wish to defer or delay your child’s entry your first step will be to contact the schools. Where possible this should be done prior to making your child’s Starting Primary School Application. The schools are best placed to provide advice and support when making a decision that will affect your child’s whole school life.

After this discussion, should you decide that delayed entry into reception is in your child’s best interest, you must complete the form found via the link at the bottom of this page. This  can be completed and returned to along with any supporting evidence you wish to be shared with the schools.  We will refer the request to the admissions authority or Head Teacher for them to consider. We will monitor their responses and provide you with outcomes once they are received.

Under the current School Admissions Code and underlying Regulations, you should be aware of the following:  

  1. There is no guarantee of the school which will be offered when you apply, and we cannot guarantee one of your preferences will be met
  2. The schools’ usual admissions criteria will be applied to your application 
  3. You should contact your existing nursery/pre-school provision (if applicable) to ensure a place continues to be available for your child.
  4. The decision does not apply to any future secondary school applications or changes of school, and you would need to make a new request for consideration at that time
  5. If the child is issued with an EHCP, it would supersede the decisions 


Application form