Changes to Full Time Education Start Date

Page updated on: 23/04/2024

Changes to Full time education start date

Following consultation, the Primary rising 4s policy was discussed by Carmarthenshire County Councils’ Cabinet on 25th March 2024.   The decision was made to remove the Rising 4s policy and admit full time learners to primary schools in the school term following their fourth birthday.  This policy change will be implemented from the 2025/26 Academic Year by all Community, Voluntary Aided & Controlled schools within the County.   

This change will affect children born on or after the 1st September 2021 onwards. The following table summarises the start dates for pupils based on their date of birth, together with the deadline for submitting the admissions application and the date of notification of decision.  

Child’s Date of Birth Range 

Admission Term 

Expected admission Start Date 

Closing date for applications 

Notification of decision date 

1 September 2021 to 31 December 2021 

Spring Term 2026 

January 2026 


31st January 2025 


16th of April 2025 or next working day 

1 January 2022 to 31 March 2022 

Summer Term 2026 

April 2026 

1 April  2022 to 31 August 2022 

Autumn Term 2026 

September 2026 

Impact on 3 year old part time education in 3 to 11 schools

Under the current policy, children receive up to 2 terms of part time education in 3 to 11 schools. Under the new policy for the 2025/26 academic year, children will receive up to 3 terms of part time education in 3 to 11 schools. Children will finish part time education at the end of the term that they turn 4 years old.

Parents must submit a separate application for the full time 4 year old place in a school by the 31st January 2025.

Governors & Head Teachers

Please familiarise yourself with the change in the Admissions Policy for 2025/26 and share widely with staff and parents. Suggest you update your prospectus, policies and websites to reflect these changes.


The School Admissions team will contact all parents that have previously submitted applications affected by the change. There is no need to re-apply if you have already made an application for a full-time school place. Admissions will automatically update the start date to reflect the new policy.

Parents that have yet to apply for full time school place, the closing date to submit an application is the 31st January 2025.

A separate application is required for a part-time and full-time school place.

Working parents may be able to access up to 30 hours funded combined Education and Childcare via the Welsh Governments’ Childcare offer for eligible children aged 3 to 4 years old. Please follow this link Childcare - Carmarthenshire Family Information Service ( for more information.

Nursery & Childcare providers

From September 2025, the new policy will delay children starting school full time by a term and may require children remaining at your settings a term longer, depending on parental choice/individual children family circumstances. Please share this information widely with Parents. Please contact the Family Information Service (FIS) Childcare - Carmarthenshire Family Information Service ( should you require any further information.

Admission Authorities in Carmarthenshire

A meeting will be held to discuss the implementation of the new policy with Voluntary Aided Schools.


Education & Schools