Feeling Guilty about holding back my February born 5 year old in preschool

Sasha - posted on 02/19/2014 ( 3 moms have responded )




My son just turned 5 this February and is in preschool. He gets help with some speech issues and has some emotional immaturity. His teacher gave the suggestion of holding him back another year. He is smart academically, but has trouble socially. I can understand holding back summer babies, but he is born in February. I can see the advantages of holding him back, but I guess I feel guilty about him being so old. In a way I feel like pushing him forward and maybe he will rise to the occasion and if not they will hold him in kindergarten. What do you guys think?


Jodi - posted on 02/19/2014




Sasha, you have done the right thing. One of our sons is a May baby, and was legally allowed to start school when he was 4, but he, too, had speech issues and was nowhere emotionally mature enough to attend school that year. We even went to court with his mother to ensure he was kept back (she was planning on sending him). It was the best decision ever made - by the following year, his speech was much better, he had matured, and he is not a very happy 14 year old boy who is excelling in school.

I am a high school teacher, and I teach a lot of Year 7 students, and I often see that the children who are only 11 when they start high school, more often the boys, are incredibly immature and sometimes don't cope as well with high school life. Honestly, if he's not ready, he's not ready. Not all children are. Boys, especially, tend to be less ready that girls, and actually benefit from starting later (there is research to this effect too - we look at a LOT of research before we went to court).

Sarah - posted on 02/19/2014




If his maturity is not there and he is not there socially then please don't push him to go forward. It will only make things worse down the road. Right now doing preschool for another year is not a big deal. Being held back in 2nd or 3rd grade when his grades start to come into play will be a big deal. Also if he is able to keep up with his grades but still is behind maturity wise and socially then imagine a 16 yr old lacking those skills. The older he becomes the harder life becomes for him and the more risks that come along with that. I held my middle child back a year because she was a summer birth day and I wanted the maturity to be there. She would have been fine academically and socially, but maturity is a BIG thing. That is a thing that can't be taught. I did not want her to struggle as a high schooler or as a college student making poor choices due to her lack of maturity. Not that she still won't make poor decisions.....just you can see the difference with the maturity. She is now in 6th grade. You can look at her grade and see those who struggle with that and those who don't.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 02/19/2014




Why push? If he's not ready, he will not 'rise' to the occasion, and that's just plain mean, to push him into a situation that he's not ready for. Wouldn't you rather he enjoy school, and be successful? Pushing him too early will negate that.

Its only February. Have him assessed closer to the time when he'd 'normally' enter kindergarten. In our area, that's the summer prior to starting.


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