A child’s age on 1 September determines the point of entry in England and Wales, whereas it is 1 July in Northern Ireland. In Scotland, all those born between March of a given year and February of the following year are placed in the same group.
The latest research from the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) focuses on England and looks at the test scores and happiness levels of August-born children compared with their older, September-born peers.
It found children born in August scored substantially lower in national achievement tests and other measures of cognitive skills.
At the age of seven, they are more than three times as likely to be regarded as “below average” by their teachers in reading, writing and maths.
The IFS research showed August-born children were 20% more likely to study for vocational qualifications if they stayed on in education, and 20% less likely to be at a leading university compared with a September-born teenager.
"It is clear that the consequences of the month in which you were born extend beyond educational attainment. We find evidence that, particularly at younger ages, summer-born children are more likely to report being unhappy at school and to have experienced bullying than autumn-born children," says Greaves."
My birthday is in July, can I now blame my parents for the fact I didn’t do better in school?
Summer-born struggle: Why August children suffer at school