Almost half of all children are not ready to start school, a national survey has revealed.
A YouGov poll that had responses from almost a thousand primary school teachers and staff found that on average 50% of all children are not ready to start school.
Commissioned by the early education charity Kindred, the school readiness survey also revealed that 88% of primary school teachers and teaching assistants are having to spend additional time with those not achieving their developmental milestones.
In addition, 90% of teachers surveyed had at least one child in their class who is not toilet trained and 91% of teachers surveyed had at least one child in their class who doesn’t have basic language skills.
Nearly all of the teachers surveyed (97%) had at least one child in their class who doesn’t know how to listen/respond to simple instructions.
Felicity Gillespie, director at Kindred, said: ‘The YouGov survey suggesting half our children are starting their school journey at such a disadvantage is shocking, particularly as we know what an impact being behind at this point has on later life chances. Mental health, literacy, earning potential are all being impacted.
‘Many will blame parents but we all want the best for our children and teachers say what isn’t being made clear enough to parents is what being developmentally ready for school actually means.
‘We need a new national conversation about parenting and the state’s role in our children’s development – one that reflects the irrefutable scientific proof that brain development pre-school is as important as school-based education.’