Preschool another year or start Kindergarten at 4 1/2?

Amanda - posted on 03/29/2012 ( 285 moms have responded )

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My daughter is turning 5 October 9th, so she is age ready to start kindergarten. The preschool she attends right now says she is academically and socially ready as well.... but the director has said that she thinks we would be giving her a head start by keeping her in preschool another year. My husband and I are very conflicted... I would appreciate some outsider opinions and advice! Thanks.

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~♥Little Miss - posted on 03/29/2012

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A lot of parents are doing what you are thinking about doing. It is called red shirting I believe. To hold their kinder kid back one year to give them and "edge" on the other students. I personally think it is silly. What is the point of keeping her back in pre school to learn the same exact thing she already has? Give your daughter the chance to move on. I don't understand truly how the is beneficial to hold them back when they are ready to move on. I am sure when she is older and you tell her you chose to keep her back, it will just annoy her and make her feel you thought she was to stupid to advance to kindergarten. It is kindergarten....NOT college.

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Honestly, I have never, ever heard any parent or child say they were glad he/she started early. I am an occupational therapist who works in a school district and spend my days with disabled and non disabled students. I meet with many families each year and not one has ever said "yay! We are so glad we started him/her early". I am in my 40's and two of my best friends were the two youngest in my class. Both were the last to do everything. Last to drive. Last to turn 16, last to be able to go to bars. It may seem like silly things, but it was everything to them. One of my friends said that she wished that her parents had held her back because she felt she was so young and hated it. My sister, on the other hand, was an the oldest in her class and always felt she had a leg up, so to speak. My son is the oldest in his class. He turned 8 this year before second grade started and some of his peers in 2nd grade won't be 8 until this summer. He is more mature and frankly is able to handle the classwork easily. Without reservations I say hold your daughter. There is no downside to it in my opinion. If this is an issue about child care and getting 'free' kindergarten, then invest the extra year in her to remain in pre-k.

Peggy - posted on 03/31/2012

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I am an elementary school teacher. In all my years of teaching (25) I have never heard a parent say they wish they had not kept their child back, but I have had numerous parents tell me they wish they had not let their child start early. Remember being academically ready is not the only thing you should consider. Emotional levels and levels of independence should also be considered. In school it is not just how smart you are but also your work and study habits. The higher you go the more you are expected to work independently, to turn in assignments on time and to have the expectation of yourself to do quality work.

But above all you want your child to feel successful, love school and be happy.

Amanda - posted on 03/29/2012

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The age cutoff here in San Diego county is the child must turn 5 by November 5th I believe... I called the district and she is age ready to go into kindergarten. But, I still feel like I would be giving her a better chance of succeeding in kindergarten by giving her another year of preschool. ?????

YOLANDA - posted on 04/02/2012

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My sister was in that boat as a child. Mom kept her home another year. It doesnt seem like a big deal now waiting another year but it makes a huge difference going into high school when kids mature the fastest socially. Just look at the difference in an 8th grader compared to a freshman at the end of the school year, and she will be going to college as a 17yr old. More and more honors classes are available now if she gets ahead of her classmates. Waiting another year will not hurt her. No matter what you decide it will be the right decision for your family. There is no "right" or "wrong" in many of the decisions we make as parents. Make your decision and dont look back. If we look back at what we should have done different we are not looking forward to see the next big milestone coming down the road!!! Good luck!!!!

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Teah - posted on 06/01/2012

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Yes that is true in most cases, but there are ways around it but it is kind of diffucult. Im having that same issue with a Dec 5year old.

Teah - posted on 06/01/2012

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I have the same issue except my daughter isn't 5 until Dec. She is trying to read & personally I feel like she belongs in Kindergarten, especially if she has the knowledge that a Kindergartener has. I also have a son that has almost completed Kindergarten and she is learning right along with him. I feel if your child has has the knowledge and drive why not. I feel like how can they determine even if a child whose birthday meets the cut off is socially and emotionally ready for school.

Irene - posted on 04/02/2012

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Why not keep her in the preschool in the mornings and in school in the afternoon. If the preschool say she is ready, I think they would have a better understanding as to what she can do then a 5 min visit to the dr unless there is a physical reason why the dr thinks she would do better to start later.

Leslie - posted on 04/02/2012

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If you send her to kindergarten this coming school year, she will start school as one of the very youngest in her class. That means she will always be among the youngest, which will take away from her self-confidence. I know what I'm talking about because I was in that position. I went all the way through school feeling out of place and having zero confidence. I excelled academically, but failed miserably socially. So as a mom, when I had 2 sons with late birthdays, I waited an extra year with both of them. And both of them have excelled in every way. They were happy successful learners all the way through school, including college and are now successful in their fields. And one of them frequently thanked me in high school, saying such things as "I'm glad you waited the extra year, mom, I know I'm not ready for 10th/11th/12th grade yet." The other one said, "Oh, you waited an extra year for me? Doesn't matter. I didn't even know. I love my friends." I vote with you, mom. Giving your child another year to grow up will allow her to be among the oldest in her class and allow her to mature and gain confidence.

Ariel - posted on 04/02/2012

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I remember being one of those children that got held back from starting Kindergarten even though I was age and academically ready (end of October birthday). I can remember going in for the tests to see if I was ready for kindergarten and being really excited as I flew through everything they wanted me to do and talk to me about and I can remember how upset I was when my parents told me I had to wait another year. When I was finally in Kindergarten I was really bored, I was ahead of all of the children and I remember wanting to be in the class with all the first grade students. At the end of Kindergarten they decided to test my IQ and I wound up in a group for talented and gifted children. I remember being pretty happy with that until I reached High School then no such groups existed and I was made to repeat certain subjects that I was already ahead in and yet again spending a lot of High School bored. In the end I wished that I wouldn't have been held back a year and would have instead had someone ask me what I wanted. So maybe it's a good idea to talk to your daughter and see things through her eyes some. Maybe she'll tell you that she isn't ready and maybe she'll tell you that she's ready to go to Kindergarten.



I am now living in the Netherlands where they start sending children to school at the age of 4 (they try to push for children to start at 2 if they aren't speaking Dutch at home) but I'm originally from Ohio. I'm looking forward to seeing how my son does when he reaches the right age to go to school.

Margarita - posted on 04/02/2012

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Hello =)



I finally stopped reading as it's taking forever and hope you are not getting overwhelmed (I believe you can close the thread if you wish). I definitely agree that it depends on the child. I started school in Mexico in the mid seventies when we had three grades of kindergarten (1st, 2nd, and 3rd) depending on age, but only one year of kindergarten was required to attend elementary school, though many parents kept their kids in school until 3rd (I only attended 2nd) and I suspect there was some sort of age cutoff. I don't know the reasons my mother chose to advance me to elementary at the age of 5, or if I was on probation due to young age (I was a November baby and remember that I had to take an oral exam that I don't think other kids in my class had to take, and I know that a couple of kids I went to school had to repeat first grade, but it was considered quite normal), but I am quite happy the results. I did go through a dicey period in 7th grade, but that had more to do with being bullied for being Mexican (my schooling after elementary was in Texas), and for being proud of doing well in school (it was ok to be proud of doing well in sports, but you had to be embarrassed by good grades or were branded a nerd) than for being younger (I think the cutoff date was Sept 1st., so I was a lot younger than most of my peers). By high school this ceased to be a problem. I was accepted to a program that allowed us to go to college and finish high school at the same time (the Texas Academy of Math and Science), so I basically started college (including living in a residence hall nearly 600 miles from home) at the age of 15. Although some of the college students didn't care for having us around (we were only the 2nd class to go there), they have pretty much come to accept "tamsters" (according to my brother who now attends the university that hosts the program) and in my day there were plenty of college students who could care less how old we were, though many felt the rules we had to live under were neo-nazi like (we had bed-checks, etc, but I think this was more of a legal liability concern than anything else). As for the concern that young kids will feel pressured to do what the older kids are doing, I never felt that to be the case. The only kids that started "getting in trouble" were those who had had particularly strict upbringings and/or went to particularly militant Catholic schools and were not prepared for any sort of freedom (though the program was far from permissive). So I wouldn't worry about that aspect of it myself. Heck, I remember talking to a family friend about my mother's concern that I would end up having sex and getting into drugs when I moved to New York at the age of 17 to finish college, and I said I thought the risk was much higher if I'd stayed in South Texas because I'd be bored out of my mind (she agreed as it was pretty much how early sexual experimentation started for her), but it certainly depends on how independent your child is. If they are independent, they will not be swayed by their friends. If they are more concerned about pleasing other, chances are they will feel this way whether younger or older.



I guess what I'm trying to say is that if your daughter's teachers feel she is socially and academically ready, and you feel she's ready (I wouldn't go by the homework bit as it's definitely not an indicator of what she'll be like in the classroom, but rather how she handles quiet time - say, going to church or sitting through story time at the library) then I would go ahead and send her. One thing I thought was interesting is you said she seems to be ready for school 5 days per week (perhaps the structure?), if so, I think Kindergarten is the way to go (you can actually do preschool for half days and two or three days per week).



Good luck!

Sandra - posted on 04/02/2012

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So many people "red shirt" as stated above that she also needs to be comfortable around older kids. I am in Texas and kids wanted their boys big for football and such, so it was always awkward for a boy to be younger, even if that was the right level for him using other indicators.

Sandra - posted on 04/02/2012

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We had grade-skipped kinder for my son, who was reading and solving math problems two years above kinder level. An administrator suggested it. What you are talking about is within the age perimeters the school suggests, so you are not "robbing her of childhood", as you could argue I did. I was afraid of boredom, and he was bored anyway.

Many, many parents wait on the boys and advance the girls. I would use that fact to help with the decision. I was sent to private school since I missed my cut-off by 8 days and then put into a combo class. Yup, I went to college at 17. So what? My only issues came when u couldn't drive at the same time as my classmates. Didn't matter much.

I would focus on how well she would fit in. Is she kind of tall, or very small? Is she used to a full day of school? If yes to these then send her on with confidence. Kids are ready or not. They don't get "more ready". Plenty of parents will send their kids on- again, you are within the guidelines. You are not rushing. There will be other younger kids (especially girls) there. Boys- a different story entirely from my experience.

Rose - posted on 04/01/2012

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There was a great program on tv about this a few weeks ago it was called "red shirting".it had to do with parents that were holding their kids back in kindergarten so they would have an edvantage the reasoning is that they would be more mature then the younger kids and get more attention because they would be considered "smarter' and they would have an advantage when it would come to playing sports because they would be bigger and more cordinated and they would be the standout and be more successful throught their education because they would be at an advantage. One parent was upset because the public school her child attended held back all the kindergarteners so they would have this advantage and she was outraged because she claimed her son was already reading and was ready for the first grade and the other partent in the same situation tried to talk hor into it saying her son would be behind in the age factor for sports and even that when it came to dating he would be behind because his peers would be driving and dating before him....she enrolled her son in a pribate school where he is doing oustanding academically. What is a really important factor is that is your child able to maturely handle a a structured environment that isn't basically centered on play but more or learning? Is your child mentally ready socially to adapt to a classroom environment? Do you think she is ready then pursue possible a private school. There is cut off dates for entry levels into kindergarten and first grade but if you feel she is ready then press the issue. My two oldest daughters were opposites when it came to everything so every child is different and matures and learns at different levels. My oldest ones birthday is in February and attended nursery school and was ready for kindergarten and because she attended nursery school was ready for the social and academic part of it. She actually was in gifted classes all through her years in school. My middle daughter's birthday is September 18th. The cutoff day back then was September 30th so because of that factor she was one of the younger kids in her class. The following year they changed the cutoff to 5 by September 1st. Looking back I wish I would have had the option for her to repeat her nursery schooling because I think she would have been better prepared academically, emotionally, and socially. So like I first started this every child learns at their own pace but look at how ready and adaptable is your child and act on that. My adivise is to look up on the internet red shirting and maybe that will help you with your decision. My oldest has a son that was born 6 weeks early he was due late October but arrived September 11th. He is very smart and knew his colors at age 3 he can add and subtract in his head and he is only 5 and they wanted to put him in kindergarten at age 4 because he was so advanced but reluctant because they didn't feet he was ready socially. They had informed my daughter that he probably would have to repeat kindergarten because of his age which he is basically going to do so he is at the same level maturely with the other kids. She is pregnant with her 3rd and is due the first week of September but wants to be induced in late August so her child will be able to start kindergarten at age 5 and this would save her on nursery and babysitting costs. Also a big factor to consider, Good luck on what you decide but stand your ground.

Maria - posted on 04/01/2012

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My daughter is 9 and I have a small daycare with two preschoolers. My daughter turned 5 late July and we put her in kindy soon after. She caught up maturity wise by the end of school. Academic wise not until 3rd grade. She is an average student. Super smart math skills, but reading meets now in 4th. Has been a learning struggle. The two preschool boys are spring babes. They are 6 months ahead and I feel they will be fine in kindy this coming fall. I was an Oct babe being 4 entering kindy. I feel if I would have been given one more year before kindy I would have exceeded at my education. I worked so hard, I was a quiet kid, loved school. But it was hard to catch up with the kids in my class. I was the youngest and got b's &some c's(some a's). In my opinion kids turning 5 after July 1st should wait until the following year for kindergarten. There is a study that expresses that summer babies should wait. I eished I eould have followed that advice for my daughter.

Anna - posted on 04/01/2012

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hi amanda, i'm from Dubai. I also have the same problem as yours. My daughter will be turning 5 this month and yet the school advise her that she should be in Grade 1.

Deanna - posted on 04/01/2012

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Better to be oldest than youngest in the class. Means they get drivers license and come of age before others. Also maturity helps them to better on school and be a leader. I never regretted holding my twins back. Preschool teacher also said they were academically and socially ready. Put them in French immersion instead that gave them the added challenge and was the best thing I ever did.

Erin - posted on 04/01/2012

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In CA they just changed the law. This year cutoff is Nov, next year Oct and so on until they get to Sept. It was Dec 2nd before that as we were a "Late Start State".

Rebekah - posted on 04/01/2012

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I thought the cut off for starting Kindergarten was 5 years old by sometime in September. What does the school district say? Or are you sending her to private school?

Ruth - posted on 04/01/2012

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If she is socially and accademically ready, what reason does the director have for holding her back? Sounds like the director is looking at it as a loss of revenue. If your daughter has already mastered the things taught in preschool, holding her back will most likely set her back. She will get bored as there is no challege for her and most likely lose interest in learning. And if she's not learning she can actually lose skills she already had. This would make kindergarden even harder for her and possibly cause her to be held back a second time. At that point your smart little girl is going to feel she is dumb, and academics will be a struggle for the rest of her life because she won't believe she is capable.

Angie - posted on 04/01/2012

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Our daughter has an August 23 birthday and our cutoff date is September 30. I sent her to half-day kindergarten on time, knowing that I didn't think she would be ready to go to first grade. She was fine academically, but socially she just wasn't interested in some of the other things the other kids were. She wasn't ready to sit there all day and be engaged. After that year, we chose to send her to full-day kindergarten the next year, when she had just turned 6. I, like you, debated like crazy over the decision and was it the right one. For me, I thought about her life in the future. She would be the last one getting her driver's license, going to college right after she turned 17 instead of 18, developing later than girls in her class (if she is like me. ha!). In the end, there were no negatives to having her do kindergarten again. I didn't want to do preschool again because she already learned what she needed to in preschool. Now she is in second grade and at the top of the class. She reads on a fifth grade level and is just more mature than some of the younger kids. And, she is definitely not the oldest. There are a couple of other kids whose parents didn't start them on time for whatever reason. I'm just so happy with our decision to hold her back. She is a leader and just so confident. You could always send your daughter to kindergarten and if you think she's not ready for first grade, have her do it again. I am in the classrooms a lot volunteering and I do notice a maturity difference in the younger and older kids. For example, a girl in her kindergarten class was 4 when she started, but turned 5 before the cutoff date. She was very bright and a top reader, but just not as mature as the rest of the kids. I also noticed this at my daughter's birthday party. The other kids just adjusted better to what was going on, while this girl just seemed so young to me. Her mother told me she wishes she would have held her back. The best advice is to go with your gut. I knew what mine was, it just took a while to listen to it. Good luck!

Judy - posted on 04/01/2012

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I turned 5, on October 3rd...the year I started kindergarten in Orange County. I'm fine! Now, think of this, you probably wouldn't want your child to be 18 years old their entire senior year of high school would you? That seems too old. Since she has already been to preschool, she is probably ready. If you keep her back, she could be bored that first year.

Tiz - posted on 04/01/2012

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I live in Washington D C and the child have to 5 by September so I think it would not hurt and keep her in PS but if u still not sure u should call the school and see do your child have to be 5 before school starts to get in good luck

Erin - posted on 04/01/2012

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My daughter will be six Oct 18th and she is in kindergarten now. So this time last year we were asking ourselves the same question. The school also told us she was academically ready and having worked pediatrics for 5 years, I truly believe it was a great choice. I believe you know you're child and know when they are ready. Mackenzie is right where she should be and maybe even a little further ahead,

I hope this helps.

Stacey - posted on 04/01/2012

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I would say go to the school and have her evaluated like any other kindergartener and if she tests well then her staying behind will not do much for her. If she is not ready academically then you should have her stay back. I

Jaime - posted on 04/01/2012

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Hi there, I live in Australia and here they like the children to be at least 5 1/2 before a child starts school (our school year starts in Feb rather than Sept). I dont think they accept 4 1/2 year olds at all any more? They apparently are more socially ready (ready to let go of mum) and mentally more prepared and able to learn the things they need to. I think it's a great idea. However you know your child best and if you feel you and your child are prepared and ready for school then it's your choice! I guess I look at it this way: what do I have to lose by putting him in early? Answer: the child might not be ready and have to repeat (worse case) What have you got to gain by putting him in late? Answer: he will be a year older and wiser and be more prepared for it? Those are the questions you need to answer for yourself. Good luck!!

Kristy - posted on 04/01/2012

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If she is academically and socially ready for school (and emotionally ready as well?) then keeping her at preschool another year doesn't necessarily give her a 'head start', in fact if children are kept back when they are ready, they often become bored and aren't stimulated enough when they enter the kindergarten classroom. As a kindergarten teacher myself (and a degree in Early Childhood), I would send your daughter to school if she is socially, emotionally and academically ready. Children come to school with such a varied wealth of knowlegde and you don't want to turn her 'head start' into boredom. Maybe speak with the director and see in what areas she feels she needs a head start in exactly?

Felicia - posted on 04/01/2012

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As a child who was born November 21 and who now has a son who just turned 5 Dec 5, 2011, he will go to kindergarten this August 2012. The cutoff in my state is 5 years old by August 1. I really don't understand the others who have posted 5 by September, November-is that when the school year begins? Anyway, I thought most schools begin in August or early September.



Anyway, during my schooling years, myself and my peers were average age, meaning turning another age during the school year. The good thing for me and my sone being born at the end of the year, we are viturally the same age all year, give or take a few weeks. Same for January babies. I digress. Anyway, I was 18 when we graduated-no big deal. In any grade, you have to allow for about 4 years on either side because things happen...I know back in the day, a lot of my younger peers skipped a grade, or something. However, this was never an issue for me or my friends, this age thing, but it seems to be with parents. My point is, the first gauge is the school district's cutoff, then you knowing YOUR child. You cannot help when you are born and frankly my atitude is' go to school when you are supposed to go to school.' We will have enough to deal with to keep our kids on track once they begin this initial 12 years of education.

Beth - posted on 04/01/2012

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My experience and my daughter is 22 now. We let her start early she turned 5 Oct. 13th. She did fine with reading and keeping up academically but about 5th grade she started having difficulty with the other kids. They were all 5 and 6 when they started. She was the youngest in her class. Later in High School I realized everyone was mentally more mature then her. I would wait its a bigger difference as they get older. Good Luck

Maria - posted on 04/01/2012

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My daughter's bday is Oct 10. We had the same issue coz there's a rule that they have to be 5 as of Sept 30 in order to attend K. We def did not want to hold her back. For one thing she was already reading at a 1st grade level. So keeping her back would mean reading preschool books with her class. We were lucky to find a private school that accepted her in their K prog. And with the $$$$ we were paying for daycare/preschool, we actually spent less sending her to full day K. And as a result, she is now is 2nd grd reading at 4th grd level & in the gifted program. I guess my advice would be to evaluate your daughter's abilities. Coz she may already have an edge that she may lose if she is held back. Coz kids copy other kids around them. If she has 4yr olds around her, there is a good chance she will copy their level instead of being challenged to be higher. Good luck!

Linda - posted on 04/01/2012

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I've been a teacher for 12 years and my son who will be 5 yrs. old in October is in the same situation. While he too is cognitively, socially, emotionally ready. He will be one of the younger kids in his class. If I wait another year then he will be one of the oldest in his class. NOt sure if this helps but something to consider.

Jacki - posted on 04/01/2012

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My son turned 5 September 18th this past year and I went ahead and started him in kindergarten and he has excelled! He is reading, telling time, adding and subtracting, the whole nine yards! I would say use your best judgement! No one knows your child like you do and if you feel more comfortable with holding her back that is what you need to do. But I wouldn't hold her back if she is ready!

Sarah - posted on 04/01/2012

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As a preschool teacher, I would recommend listening to her preschool teacher. The director is probably not fully aware of where she is academically and socially. I would also go with your motherly instinct. You know your daughter better then anyone else. Each child develops differently. My son, for instance, is of the age where we could have registered him to start kindergarten this Fall. However, I do not feel that he is socially or emotionally ready. Academically yes, but boys develop slower then girls in some areas and in my experience as a mother and a preschool teacher I see more girls ready for kindergarten at 4 or 4 1/2 then I do boys. Hope this helps and good luck in your choice. Also know that depending on what state you live in Kindergarten may not even be a mandotory thing; in our state (Ca.) it is not!

Victoria - posted on 04/01/2012

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She is a girl and girls tend to do better in kindergarten at younger ages then boys. If socially she is ready then I say go for it!!! She will do great!

PATRICIA - posted on 04/01/2012

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Pre-schools that offer kindergarten are a great option. My son is a great example of it. He was definitely advanced in 1st grade, in comparison to his peers when he went to public schools. If you have the money to keep your child private in kindergarten, I highly recommended it.

Tamara - posted on 04/01/2012

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My best advice is to go with your heart and motherly tuition. You know your child best. Both my kids have "close to cut off" birthdays. My daughter was very bright, a quick learner and socially mature, so I knew letting her be a younger child in her grade would be no problem, and she has done well.



My son, on the other hand, was struggling in first grade with his handwriting, sounding out words, and a few other things. The teacher tried to pass him ahead with a bunch of C minuses all year, and I knew in my heart he wasn't quite ready to move on to second grade. The school tried to convince me to put him in second, and I just couldn't in my right mind do it (I think it was not in the school's best interest to hold him back). I felt so strongly about it, and got so tired of the school trying to push me around, that I homeschooled him to repeat first grade. One of the best decisions I ever made.....

Melissa - posted on 04/01/2012

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If was me I'd do one more ye of preschool. But thats me. The second year would just be a repeat and working in things she didn't get this yr.

Karin - posted on 04/01/2012

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I am in the same situation with my son. He will be 5 at the end of August and makes the cut-off date but the pre-school director as well as his teacher both feel it is better to hold him back a year and I tend to agree. He is intelligent enough to start, but emotionally I do not feel like he'd be ready. I started school at 4 1/2 and my mom said she wishes she would have had the insight to hold me back. I saw a news report on this very thing and they found that holding them back tends to help in the long run. Kids who start school when they are a little older tend to be leaders and such when they get into high school, whereas kids who start younger always seem to lag behind everyone else. If your daughter is turning 5 in October, she will be physically behind everyone else. Just my thoughts....

Colleen - posted on 04/01/2012

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Um, as a person who was retained as well as my sister I can tell you it is not a bad thing at all. I do not have any scars from this experience, either did my sister or the classmates who were being retained with me. I think you are doing a dis service to people to make them believe it is wrong. You do not know the full extent of your child's abilities until they begin school. If I had not stayed back, I would have suffered in my later years. It is wrong of you to put a stigma on staying back a year.

Kattia - posted on 04/01/2012

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If she is academically & socially ready, then what exactly is the point of holding her back? Last year my daughter was 4 when she started kindergarten( her birthday is in late November) she was more than ready. Before she started she was strong in both math and reading. So, for us we felt like we would do her a disservice by keeping her back. 3 months into the school she was so far ahead that the school allowed her to spend part of her day in a first grade class. She handled it pretty well being with kids who were almost 2 years older. We kept a line of communication open with her teachers to be sure that we was doing ok. I have friends and family who didnt hold back, and none of us have run into any issues nor have we ever regretted it

Kylie - posted on 04/01/2012

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Well, I think you've already answered your own question. You seem happy to keep her in preschool another year. It won't hurt her one bit. If you're not sure I would keep her back. Think about it this way, what benefit will she get from starting a year earlier? She just looses a year of childhood. Ready or not, she's only just even making the cut off. Go with your gut!

Cindy - posted on 04/01/2012

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I personally think that it would be more beneficial to her emotionally and maturity wise to leave her in head-start one more year. I was only 17 when I graduated form high school and I did very well academically but my social skills were not as mature as my classmates. And I turned 18 earlier than October. And if you hold her back academically she will do even better and be able to assist students struggling enhancing her self esteem. Everyne I know that has held there child back for the one more year has not regretted is and your daughter will never know the difference. The class that she starts with will be her class all the way through school. Also just because they say she is socially and academically ready now, how about 2, 3, 4 years from now.

Irene - posted on 04/01/2012

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My parents were told the same thing when i was younger. If the pre-school teacher says she is ready than she is, the director is not there the whole time to see. Believe her teacher and yourself. You are the ones who see what she is capable of.

Rachael - posted on 04/01/2012

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Our cut off's in Australia are slightly different being June 31st. My daughter is the end of May so I don't see any reason to rush her off to school. She is currently at pre school 2 days a week and does other activities on other days or has a day at home or with my mum so I really don't see any point rushing her into 5 day a week learning. It has been common in Europe for a long time for children not to go to school until 6 and academically they do as well or better than others who attended school earlier.

Chanel - posted on 04/01/2012

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In Texas you have to be 5 by Aug 31st. Every parent I have talked to that held their child back said they have NEVER regretted the decision but I have talked to many parents, family included that started them at a very young 5 and have regretted it. It also depends on the school system though, we are in a very competitive school district. I have had many clients (I'm a Realtor) relocate here and have been suprised by the advanced curriculum.

Colleen - posted on 04/01/2012

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My daughter turned 5 mid Sept. we too were conflicted since my birthday falls mid Oct. and I ended up going to a transitional 1rst grade, because socially I was very shy. We spoke with her teacher about it before hand and she said that she usually sees social issues over academic ones with the younger ones. We decided to go ahead and start her because she was so ready and socially she had no issues. She is doing very well. Younger girls to tend to do better than younger boys ( don't beat me up moms with boys, it's just recorded that way in my research). If you think she is ready, start her. Worst case scenario she repeats K, which is not a bad thing at all. My extra year in first saved me. I needed more time, but we would not have known that if we didn't try and it helped recognize some issues that may have gone unnoticed if I would have waited. You know your daughter, if you really think she is ready, go for it, but listen to your instincts! Good luck with your decision!

[deleted account]

We were in a similar situation, but with my son. His b-day is early November and the cut-off that year was Dec. 1st. He too was "academically" ready, but our concern was that he was physically very small. In the end, I didn't want him to get bored with school and developed negative feelings towards school, so we went ahead and started him in Kindergarten at the age of 4. He has been at the top of his class since then (he's in 3rd gr now) and he's had the highest math score almost every year. Socially, he's been average. He's not the best behaved boy in class, but he's far from the worst too. He is still small and is typically one of the smallest students in his class, but he has a big personality, so he's doing just fine. So far for us, it has worked out just fine starting him early. Having said all that, we too talked to a ton of people when we were dwelling over this decision four years ago, and I will say that of those that waited, none of them regretted their decision, but some that didn't wait did regret it. They said that the big difference came in middle school (the puberty years), so we'll see...

btw - also, I didn't consider at the time that he will graduate at 17...AND...start college at 17!?!

Angela - posted on 04/01/2012

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The head start is the strong foundation. A strong foundation in education is often established over time and repetition.

Lizelle - posted on 04/01/2012

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How can you give a child a head start by keeping them back a year? It doesn't make sense.

Lizelle - posted on 04/01/2012

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How can you give a child a head start by keeping them back a year? It doesn't make sense.

Sunsearay - posted on 04/01/2012

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I'm a parent of a homeschooler...best choice ever!!!. My daughter's doctors told me to give it a try because she was so bored in public school. She get the individualized attention she needed to do her best and with all the homeschooling associations out there, she has plenty of friends.



I went with where she was academically because 3 doctors said that was what was best for her and they were right. Do what's best for your child even if tradition says otherwise

Angela - posted on 04/01/2012

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The other factor to consider is the # of kids in class. Our state allows 32 kids in kinder (I think??). Many kids have learning disabilities or developmental issues. The teachers have to give extra attention to each student, but that limits the amount that she can give overall. Older kids handle this better.

Angela - posted on 04/01/2012

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The other factor to consider is the # of kids in class. Our state allows 32 kids in kinder (I think??). Many kids have learning disabilities or developmental issues. The teachers have to give extra attention to each student, but that limits the amount that she can give overall. Older kids handle this better.

Stephanie - posted on 04/01/2012

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I am a 10th year kindergarten teacher & a mother of a 3 year old who will be entering PreK in the fall. As a professional educator, I would advise you to observe a kindergarten class for a day. You know your child. Although he/ she may appear to be ready, the structure of the class may be different (size of class; teacher/ student ratio). I have a class of 25 students with no aide. Next year, the class size will increase to 31. How will your child respond to that? Only you know. I hope I have been some help.

Laura - posted on 04/01/2012

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I am in a similar situation on what to do with next year. My son turned 5 today and our cut off is 5 by Sept 1st in IL. So he's old enough, smart little bugger too, but he has a very severe speech delay. He's made great strides since August getting in to speech 5 days a week, but he's still at about a 3 yr old speech understandability.



I'm concerned for next year b/c I know kids are mean, I know teachers are overworked and stressed (I'm one myself) and class sizes are huge. Here in 2nd grade my daughter is at 28 currently. Kindergarten is 26 per one teacher. I'm afraid my son will be ignored and looked past b/c its hard to understand him, and that the kids will make fun of him. He's got such a great heart I don't want his school experience messed up from here on out b/c of it.



I have considered homeschooling him for K next year b/c of it (and have also considered bringing my daughter right in with us).



Its not an easy decision and I can totally relate.



I started school when I was 4 (bday was end of sept and NY's cut off was Dec 1st) and so was my brother. We both did fine, I excelled and so did he.



My husband makes fun of me considering homeschool b/c I'm a public school teacher and he said that I'm a product of public school and I did fine.....but the fact is schools now are not what they were like back when I was in elementary school 25+ years ago.

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