HELP!!! My son is 5yrs old and is in kindergarten this year and I was just told by his teacher this week that she is thinking about holding him back next year due to his comprehension skills are not where she would like them to be at his age. Such as writing it down on paper to match what he is thinking. Or starting a sentence at the beginning of the story, instead of starting at the middle or the end. This was first a HUGE slap in my face due to this issue has never been addressed to me at all through out the school year.Two, it's not a mother bragging, but anyone who meets my son usually comments within 10mins flat on how smart my son is. My son has always been more advanced educational than his peers and to hear that his teacher is thinking about holding him back in kindergarten due to this one issue was an totally shock. My question is for all the teachers & moms out there, is it fair to tell a parent in the last quarter of school about a problem that was never addressed before and wants me to help fix it in less than 2months?

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Kristie - posted on 05/24/2012

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We pretty got from his teacher that because we didn't have him in preschool before that is why he struggled. We held him back and he's done fantastic of course that means he is only one grade ahead of his sister not the two. I am not sure if it was Scot or his teacher(she raised her kids before starting teaching) and seemed more grandmotherly.. That was back in 08-09 school year. Other than math he does great. It turned out great some of his 1st kindergarten friends was in his class the following year and his best friend he wouldn't of gotten to know(well probably since hubby went to school with his mom). Do what you think is the best, maybe talk to the teacher and principal maybe there is something they can help you with.

Jordan - posted on 05/24/2012

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we recieved similar news in the final weeks of school...and like your son, ours is pretty intelectually exceptional...we are not holding our child back, but he is being thoroughly screend for a neurological disorder that affects a youngsters ability to write...called dysgraphia...good luck!

[deleted account]

Do let us know what happens and try to speak factually and not from your emotional standpoint (which I know is very hard to do in these types of situations when emotions are running high).

Good luck. xxxx

Shulena - posted on 04/12/2009

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Thank you all for your advice. I am having a meeting with the teacher and principal this week.

[deleted account]

Here if kids are to be repeated they try and do it earlier rather than later, so in Kindergarten (4 year olds), prep (5 year olds) or year 1 (6 year olds) at a push year 2 (7 year olds). it is because here they adjust to a new group of peers better at a younger age than at an older age.



 



As for finding out with 2 months left of the school year, it happened to a friend of mine last year, with her twins in prep. The teacher had told her they are fine they keep up, and everything and then with 6 weeks left in the school year told their mum they needed to repeat. Their mum wrote and went and spoke to the school principal and the twins moved into year 1 this year. On the condition that if they are still behind at the end of this year then they must repeat.



 



On the topic of smart kids, yes I have two of those, but I have also discovered that all smart kids also have weeknesses, my 6 year old, at the start of the school year was reading at 5 years 6 months, but doing maths at 7 year 9 months, so she stays in year one, because comprehension is her issue, she can read, she can spell but ask her about the story or to write her own story and she can't do it.



All i can recommend is to take a good look at your child, the school and especially the teacher that they have had.



 

[deleted account]

Hi! Am a British teacher working at an American school in England. I have taught Kindergarten, First Grade and nursery. Also have a son in Kindergarten. On what you have you said, I would stand my ground and say NO WAY.

Writing is a very complex process, especially during the early years. Kids have handwriting, spelling and actual formation of ideas to contend with when writing and it can be a stressful activity.

Re. the teacher communicating this to you now: if s/he was just telling you that your son found story construction difficult, then I would listen, say thanks and ask what you could do to help him progress and also what s/he is planning to do to support him in class when writing (such as following a story framework). Having been told that he could be held back based on this is COMPLETELY RIDICULOUS. You're right, if a teacher has concerns (and this is not something that a child should be held back for), s/he should have communicated this a long while ago. Holding back a child should not be taken lightly and I, like many of my colleagues, am not an advocate of this.

I would set up a meeting straight away with the principal and teacher together and makes your feelings known. Even if a child had behavioural issues for example, then steps should be put into place to support the child NOT PUNISH the child. Writing is a development process- like reading and many other things. As you may gather, I do NOT support this decision and would strongly urge you to fight your corner.

Good luck and give us in the loop.

p.s Don't be afraid to speak your mind in a firm but polite way. You are your child's best advocate. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Aimee - posted on 04/08/2009

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Last year I was told by the teacher during our IEP for my  6 year old son that I should consider giving the gift of time - which was holding one of my identical twins back  because he was seriously behind basically due to being a seriously "delayed" child.  We were sick coming to the realization that she was probably right.  He was a hard worker and the teachers loved him, but he just wasn't learning at the pace of the kids and his grades were miserable.  Anyway, at the end of the school year when we were ready to hold him back after tons of tears she abruptly said the panel met and decided that no one was sure that it was the right thing to do so they pushed him up to second grade.  He's now two grade levels behind in everything and I feel very confused about what is the right thing...

Emily - posted on 04/08/2009

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I opened this post prepared to say, "If he struggles with comprehension it is best to do it now and not when he gets more behind and becomes more cognizant of a stigma associate with being held back." But what you described doesn't seem to warrant being held back at all. I think it is time to meet with the teaher to see if there is more and eventually get the principal involved.

Sandra - posted on 04/08/2009

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Go with you gut MOM.  I also had the same issue and I pushed because my daughter is big for her age.  I had to push for First Grade also but she is doing Great in Second now.  If he is a young five spring B-day and small for his age it might be best. But I told them that 1st grade is a better grade to repeat. Kindergarden is so vage with what the requirements are.



Good luck, 

[deleted account]

I regret not holding my daughter back in K. She also struggled/s with these issues. She is now in grade 3 and even she wishes she had repeated K. I would talk in depth with his teacher and see what she has to say. Schedule a meeting with her so it is not rushed. Make sure she listens to you, but also listen to her. Most teachers do not like to retain children, so find out what her reasons are.



From what you have said the teacher said it is really not about him being "smart" enough. It has to do with how he processes information. It sounds as if he is a visual learner, which is why he will start a sentence anywhere and also why he has trouble getting his words down on paper. These are 2 things that are hard for visual learners though there are things you can do to help them. School is not usually set up for the way they learn. 

[deleted account]

I regret not holding my daughter back in K. She also struggled/s with these issues. She is now in grade 3 and even she wishes she had repeated K. I would talk in depth with his teacher and see what she has to say. Schedule a meeting with her so it is not rushed. Make sure she listens to you, but also listen to her. Most teachers do not like to retain children, so find out what her reasons are.



From what you have said the teacher said it is really not about him being "smart" enough. It has to do with how he processes information. It sounds as if he is a visual learner, which is why he will start a sentence anywhere and also why he has trouble getting his words down on paper. These are 2 things that are hard for visual learners though there are things you can do to help them. School is not usually set up for the way they learn. 

Kellie - posted on 04/07/2009

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My first response to you would be make sure you are thinking of your son and not the reflection of your son onto you as a mom. It is hard to separate this when kids are not meeting standards we as parents set up for ourselves. My advice to you would be to talk to the teacher in more depth. Teachers do not retain kids for no reason and if it helps him now, it is much better in the long run to be retained earlier than later. If he got held back say in 2nd or 3rd grade it might not help his young ego. Whereas if retained now will he even realize he is even in the same class? Something to think about.

Sarah - posted on 04/07/2009

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In our state, we don't hold back our kids until maybe 2nd grade. Each step for kindergarteners is so small that IF he is behind you could take advantage of the leveled library books over the summer. But if you don't think the teacher is right I don't see any problem with bringing it up with her or the principle nicely. My husband is a second grade teacher and he says that that is rediculous that she wants to hold him back. But if she is honestly trying to be nice and caring, definitely confront her and let her know that you appreciate her concern, but that you will work with him over the summer.



Kindergarten isn't even required in some states, so for a lot of kids, he is advanced. Good luck on what you decide to do.

User - posted on 04/07/2009

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Absolutely not fair (in my opinion) - I would not hold him back. My daughter is 11 and still has trouble with comprehension - the school helps her with it. I would ask that he be transfered up to the next grade and ask for extra help. Our schools have testing for IEP (Independent Educational Programs), which is taking the child out for a specific subject and having more one on one (or two-seven kids rather than 20+). Although my daughter never seems to do "bad enough" to qualify - my son (9) has, and it has helped tremendously! I believe it is "good for" 3 years. They are re-evaluated each year to "renew" the IEP. Make the school help to support your child. He needs encouragment not being held back, which could hurt his confidence level. Request a meeting with school counselor and or principal as well as the teacher, and ask for extra testing to see what they will offer. Don't give up. Good luck! :)

[deleted account]

WOW!!! I am totally surprised that a teacher would bring this up AT ALL...the schools are all about keeping kids with their class! If you haven't saved grade cards/progress reports this year go ask the school for a copy of them-then go talk to your teacher-if he's been doing good all year and now the teacher is bringing up this problem ask her if there is something else going on-make sure he's doing ok socially...then be prepared to fight-nicely! I'd talk to the principal next-hodling back is a BIG deal-and he should know what the teacher is thinking. This is not the teachers decision-if he is truly delayed enough to be held back then he should have an IEP(individual education plan) which would get him extra help and allow him to remain with his peers!!!!



I am a mom with 6 adopted kids-4 have FAS(fetal alcohol) and PDD(pervasive developmental disorder) my oldest has lagged behind a bit-but has managed to stay in her class. The other 3 that are in school all have IEPs and remain with kids their age...



IF you have more trouble and the prinical doesn't listen you have legal rights...contact your state special ed family support program for more support-it's called families together where I'm from...



Good luck-It sounds like it'll all work out with a few calm conversations with teachers...

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