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Too young for formal schooling

The Association of Teachers and Lecturers' recent survey on children experiencing toileting difficulties is a worrying trend.

It is surely obvious that, for whatever reasons, these children are not ready for the workings of the very formal school day.

Why must we send our children to school at such a young age? There is no evidence that the younger we send them off to school gives them a headstart in their educational career.

In fact, there is much evidence that sending children too young into formal schooling can actually put them off education.

Northern Ireland is totally out-of-step with so many other countries. The differences between a three and four-year-old entering nursery can be huge.

This survey just highlights the need to examine the school starting age.

ROISIN GILHEANY

Omagh, Co Tyrone

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