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Not a sunny outlook

Summer-born children face a "clear and long-term disadvantage", research by academics at Cambridge Assessment has shown.

The exam board said that children born in June, July or August are more likely to play truant and be diagnosed as having special educational needs.

The findings go against recommendations, from Sir Jim Rose's government-commissioned primary curriculum review, of a September start for four-year-olds.

The Cambridge Assessment study said it appears that children around the age of four may not be ready for reception and a common start date is not the clear answer.

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