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Early entry to school

Children normally start school in August if their 5th birthday is before 1 March of the following year.

If your child's birthday is after 1 March, you can still apply to have them admitted early but you should consider these points first:

  • will they be able to fit physically and mentally into a classroom setting for five hours a day with older children, some of whom will be more than a year older than them?
  • they may miss out on the more informal learning they'd get from parents and friends and other things that shape a young child's emotional and social development
  • even if your child does cope at first, studies show that when they get to leaving age they may not be as physically or emotionally mature as their classmates
  • they may be too young to get into some higher education courses

If you still want to apply for early entry, you should fill out and return the Early entry request form.

For normal admissions to school, parents should register their child in January before the start of the academic year in August - please see our page on enrolling your child for school.

Education support services helpline

Email: Education support services helpline