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Thought leadership

Summer-born pupils are labelled incorrectly

(6 October 2017)

There is often a big difference in attainment between younger and older pupils in the same year. Professor Stephen Gorard from the School of Education suggests ways to tackle this.

It is well known that summer-born pupils leave school with lower grades than their peers, but research has now shown that they are also diagnosed by schools with special educational needs at a significantly higher rate than the older children in their year. It is time government took action to address both problems.

In England, the oldest child in a year group is born on or near September 1, and the youngest up to 12 months later, until August 31 the following year.

How old a child is relative to the rest of their year group has been strongly linked to attainment, later-life outcomes, and wider personal development.

To read Professor Gorard’s full article, see Schools Week.