If calling please ask for:
Kenny McKaig 01382 434577
Freedom of Information Request Reference No. 20200302001
I refer to your request of 02/03/2020
The answers to your questions are as follows:
Correspondence with ADES & SIMD Query
I would be grateful if you could supply me with copies of all information you hold regarding engagement
with ADES on the subject of the school starting age or deferral to starting school since July 2018. This
should include, but not be limited to, advice and reports from ADES; agendas, minutes and papers of any
meetings at which either or both of these issues were discussed; emails or other correspondence between the
local authority and ADES.
Secondly, please can you advise if and how the council uses SIMD data in making discretionary deferral
Email received:In principle, ADES would support children to have additional learning in a nursery setting when they
require more time to develop their early cognitive skills. This would ensure that they have the best start
possible when moving to a school setting. However, Curriculum for Excellence spans 3-18 and schools are
able to adapt the curriculum to meet the needs of almost all children regardless of their age. The deferral
decision, particularly for children born between August to December must be based on the assessed needs of
the individual child and not solely on the date of their birthday.
Local authorities are working exceptionally hard to deliver on the government's policy of providing 1140
hours of early learning and childcare for all 3 and 4 year olds as well as entitled 2 year olds by August
2020/ ADES would recommend that local authorities are able to focus on the delivery of this ambitions
policy and that time is take to more fully assess the implications of a change to deferral policy and practice.
Costs of the implementation on accommodation and staffing for a change in a policy would need to be
considered due to the current planning for the expansion being based on projected birth rates. We would
also want to be confident that more vulnerable families were not displaced by this change to policy should
there be enough capacity or staffing for all 3 and 4 year olds and eligible 2 year olds.
We do not use SIMD data in making discretionary deferral funding decisions Your Right to Appeal
If you are unhappy with this reply you may require the Council to review its actions and decisions in relation to your
The requirement for review must:-
be in writing or other permanent form (please address it to me);
state your name and give an address for correspondence;
specify the original request for information and the matter which gives rise to your dissatisfaction; and
be made within 40 working days of the date of this response, although the Council may, if it considers it
appropriate to do so, consider requirements for review after that time has passed.
Your requirement for review will be dealt with by the Chief Executive. He will reply to you in writing promptly and in any
event within 20 working days. He may:-
confirm my decision with or without modification;
substitute a different decision for my decision;
and will give you his reasons for so doing. If you are unhappy with the Chief Executive's decision you may then appeal
to the Scottish Information Commissioner. You must submit your appeal to the Scottish Information Commissioner
within six months of receiving the Chief Executive's decision.
Further details on the Scottish Information Commissioner's appeal procedure can be found using the direct link
www.itspublicknowledge.info/Appeal or email email@example.com or telephone (01334) 464610 or write
to Scottish Information Commissioner, Kinburn Castle, Doubledykes Road, St Andrews, Fife, KY16 9DS.