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Nat2906

HELP! Wrong Year Group at School?

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Hi!

We have recently arrived in Australia from Dubai.  My son was attending a UK curriculum school in Dubai and was in Year 4 (he had completed one term of year 4).  In his class he was one of the younger students and was definitely struggling to keep up at times (he has dyslexia).  It's my understanding that strictly speaking UK Year 4 is equivalent of halfway through Australian Year 3? (i.e. six months difference).  To cut a long story short, my son has now been put in year 4, he is by far the youngest in the class (June baby) and several kids are a full year older than him.  Given that he was already struggling with UK Year four, do you think he should be in Australian Year 4? 

It's only day two of the school year in QLD and if there is a mistake I want to change it ASAP.  I would love to know your experience transitioning to an Australian School!

Thanks :)

Edited by Nat2906

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How old is he?  I would talk to the school and see what they think about putting him in the year below. 


Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving.

Dale Carnegie – 1888-1955, Author and Lecturer

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Hi NicF

He is 8 (turned 8 in June).  The school were fairly adamant that he went into year 4 and they wouldn't acknowledge that there was a difference between year 4 UK & Australian Curriculum.  I spent 30 minutes trying to convince them that I didn't think it was a good idea under the circumstances (he already has low self esteem because he is often behind his peers).  

 

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I'd be pushing for going into the year below and being one of the older kids. For all the reasons you have given and more. 

Or if not, finding a school that will accomodate that for you. 

When we moved here (we are in SA and QLD may be very different) I faced the opposite as I wanted my son to go up a year. All the schools bar one in the area said he would have to start in reception and complete the last term, then do another full year of reception again. He'd already done one full year of it in the UK  and was way ahead academically than those in reception at the time and also had done a term of Y1. I found a school that was happy to assess him during that final term of the year with a view to putting him straight into Y1 the following school year. A few weeks later they came back and said their recommendation was he should go into Y1. We've never looked back. He's fine academically and loves it. Has never felt like he couldn't cope nor has he struggled. His teachers each year are aware he is the youngest in the year (only missed the cut off by 10 days) and also that he may be little less mature sometimes than some of the kids a year older or so. But then some of those kids can still be as goofy and silly as the younger ones. Each kid is different. Once he's found his feet with the teacher he is off and no stopping him. 

Your problem may stem from that you couldn't see the schools in action and have gotten one that is being particular and refusing to budge. Or all schools may say the same if state schools. If it's private I'd expect them to accomodate you and not cause a fuss. 

Did you take school tours and discuss this ahead of him starting? If you want to change schools do it asap and ensure you talk to the schools and let them know what you are wanting and if they will agree. I found one school out of 4 or 5 that was happy to meet me on it. And once son was in the system and moved up when we transferred schools after 8 months he remained in the year group and was not moved down a year. They just went with what he had come from at his first school here and didn't question his age. 

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The school has probably found that kids coming from a U.K. curriculum are far ahead of their Aussie age peers so made that assumption with your lad and thought he would cope with the work.  They’ve probably had to deal with stroppy parents in the past whose kids have appeared to go backwards so were just hedging their bets.

Chronologically he’s very borderline - the cut off is 30 June So if he turns 9 by 30 June 2018 (but I read somewhere they may have changed to 31 July?) he could technically be in Year 4 but you can certainly ask for him to be in Year 3, I would. If you don’t get any joy, ask to talk to the school counsellor.

Dont try and equate academic year levels, just ask what Year level all the other kids with May/June birthdays are. He’s demonstrated that he struggles in an environment where he’s the youngest in class so they would be well advised not to put him in that situation again.

Edited by Quoll
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I would see how he copes, its very different schooling here than Uk schooling, not better or worse, just different. I would speak with the teacher and head of ciriculum and let them know your concerns but if he is the right age for that year i'd leave him be and see how it goes.

My son was one of the youngest in his year, he did Term 1 of Year 3 in the Uk and was put into Yr 4 here, he coped ok and i never had reason to query it. He graduated Yr 12 a couple of years ago.

 Cal x


If you don't go after what you want, you'll never have it. If you don't ask, the answer is always no. If you don't step forward, you're always in the same place...

If you get a chance,take it, If it changes your life,let it. Nobody said it would be easy they just said it would be worth it...

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You know your son best and I would push for him to go into the younger group and if not, find another school asap.

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