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Formal lessons to start at 6 - progress or counter-productive?

16 October 2009

A review of primary education announced today that there is no evidence that children who start formal education before the age of 5 gain any advantage over their peers. The study suggested it can actually do some harm.

The Cambridge Primary Review proposes extending the Early Years Foundation Stage past the age of 5 bringing English children in line with many European countries, where standards are often higher. The review stops short of stating compulsory schooling should start at 6, but does open up the debate on the subject.

Vernon Coaker said the government is already reforming primary education and so feels that delaying the starting age would be counter-productive.

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Mark Blois

Mark Blois

Partner and Head of Education

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