Alliance welcomes schools minister’s promise to address summer-born admissions issue

17th July 2015

The Pre-school Learning Alliance has welcomed a commitment by schools minister Nick Gibb to look further into the issue of summer-born admissions.

In a letter to the Education Committee, published today, Mr Gibb acknowledges that despite changes to the school admissions code, there are still often instances where parents are not allowed to choose to defer their child’s entry into reception year.

Neil Leitch, chief executive of the Pre-school Learning Alliance, said:

“We warmly welcome the schools minister’s promise to tackle the problem of summer-born admissions, as well as his acknowledgement that recent changes to the schools admissions code have failed to solve this long-running problem.

“It’s now vital that definitive action is taken to prevent any more parents being denied the right to defer their child’s entry into reception. As it stands, admissions authorities still have the final say on such decisions, while parents don’t even have the right to appeal. This simply has to change. Parents are clearly best placed to understand the needs of their own children, and so the decision as to whether or not to defer entry should be theirs to make.

“The fact that Mr Gibb has publicly acknowledged that previous action taken by government to address this problem has been ineffective is a positive first step. We hope that the Department for Education will now waste no time in implementing the changes necessary to ensure that all future decisions on school admissions are made on the basis of what is best for the child, and not what is easiest for admissions authorities to administer.”

For further information or to interview, Neil Leitch, Chief Executive of the Pre-school Learning Alliance please contact:
Shannon Hawthorne
Pre-school Learning Alliance
T: 020 7697 2503
E: Shannon Hawthorne


Notes for editors

Further information on the Education Committee work on summer-born admissions, including Nick Gibb’s letter


  1. The Pre-school Learning Alliance is the largest voluntary sector provider of quality affordable childcare and education in England.
  2. Through direct provision and its membership of 14,000 nurseries, sessional pre-schools and parent and toddler groups, the Alliance supports over 800,000 children and their families in England. The Alliance also develops and runs family learning programmes, offers information and advice, runs acclaimed training and accreditation programmes and campaigns to influence early years policy and practice.
  3. For information about the Pre-school Learning Alliance, visit our website:

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