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Education Select Committee urges government to consider premature children's needs

20 March 2015

It has been reported today (Friday 20 March) that the Education Select Committee has written to Schools Minister, Nick Gibb with the recommendation that premature children should be allowed to start school based on their due date, not their actual birth date.

This follows the evidence presented by Bliss Campaigns and Policy Manager Helen Kirrane, at a recent Education Select Committee meeting.

Bliss welcomes these clear recommendations to consider the merits of using a child’s due date rather than their actual birth date in schools admissions policies, as well as address the lack of consistency in different authorities and produce clearer guidance for parents of premature children. 

Bliss would like to see the Government take forward all of the committee’s recommendations, so that premature children are able to start school when they are ready.

Bliss Chief Executive, Caroline Davey, said: “This is good news for children born prematurely and their families. Children born early can suffer academically if they are forced to start school before they are ready, and Bliss has long been campaigning to give families the option of delaying school entry if they believe that is right for their child. We urge the Schools Minister to seriously consider the recommendations set out by the Committee and act accordingly.”           

The letter written by the Education Select Committee is available to read online, or if you would like to find out more about Bliss’ starting school campaign, click here

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