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Old 09-17-2014, 11:17 AM
 
1 posts, read 1,226 times
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We're new to the FCPS school district and the public school system in general (oldest kid is in Kindergarten now, so our first experience!), and I had a few questions about the school system.

My son, who'll be 6 in Jan 2015) attended a Montessori school (in VA as well) and was doing first grade coursework, before we moved to NoVA. We enrolled him in the local elementary school and they took him in Kindergarten, even though I mentioned to the Registrar and later to the principal that he had already done K level coursework and would probably be bored in class.

They said they would watch for a couple weeks and go from there. It's now 2 weeks, and my son has been saying he finishes everything quickly in class and either sits bored, or meddles in other kids' work!

I want him to be challenged in school and not get bored and waste time. I referred to the curriculum online for K and 1st grade, and he seems to be in line with the 1st grade curriculum.

Do you think I could petition for him to be put in 1st grade? Do they do that here, and has anyone done it, and how would I go about it?

If they refuse, do you think I could pull him out and enroll him in another private school or a Montessori school for a couple of years and then admit him back in the public school system, since they start the AAP program from 3rd grade?

Would appreciate any tips/advice! Thanks!!
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Old 09-17-2014, 12:41 PM
 
179 posts, read 225,411 times
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Not sure about the process but I would also think about whether your son is in classes with children of the same age group. As he goes on to be in middle and high school, being a significant amount older or younger than the general population of the school grade can lead to social issues. Regardless, you should speak to the teacher about your son's claims that he sits around bored as they may have a different story and could provide advice.
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:14 PM
 
Location: Virginia
8,106 posts, read 12,647,744 times
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AAP pull-out (Level III and IV) starts in 3rd grade, but that doesn't mean that students won't receive enrichment within their classrooms. That should come, but remember that this is only week two of kindergarten. They are probably still establishing routines. I'm doing that with my older elementary students. As the year progresses, the teacher should start to differentiate lessons as needed. All students should be receiving some amount of Level I and II within their lessons.

Pulling out now and putting him back in later won't ensure he qualifies for AAP.
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:33 PM
 
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Placement is based on age, not on ability. I don't know if it is possible to get into gifted if he is not in the school system to take the gifted tests and get recommendations from the teachers.
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:33 PM
 
53 posts, read 55,992 times
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Leave him in K. That is his correct age group. He will be several years younger than the first grade cohort. I'm sure there are many other children in his class at his level or beyond and the teachers are trained to differentiate.
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Old 09-18-2014, 06:13 AM
 
1,326 posts, read 2,687,696 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mnseca View Post
Placement is based on age, not on ability. I don't know if it is possible to get into gifted if he is not in the school system to take the gifted tests and get recommendations from the teachers.
I agree with this. But it is possible based on grades and application to get in if you aren't in the FCPS, otherwise it wouldn't be fair to new residents. But I think having teacher evaluations goes a long way towards getting accepted or to provide that wakeup call that your kid isn't Advanced material. A neighbor did just what you are talking about, assuming private school would give them an advantage, keep them from being bored etc, but once in FCPS AAP, couldn't compete.

Not saying that will happen nor does it apply to your child, but it is the 1st two weeks of school. Things are settling, the teachers are dealing with kids that have been in Pre-K and those that haven't left their mommy's side for 5 years. Give it some time, talk to your teacher and if you feel more "education" is needed do that on your own. The last part seems to be a lost art. And again, not directing that comment at the OP, just a general observation.
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Old 09-18-2014, 12:46 PM
 
5 posts, read 12,922 times
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I'm not from your part of VA so I cannot address the school placement questions, but I wanted to ask how do you feel your child does socially in school? Are they enjoying being among their peers? The reason I ask is because sometimes we forget that in school social development can and is just as important as academics. My son entered kindergarten on a 3rd grade reading level and was pretty advanced in math already multiplying and dividing when school started. BUT in every other way he was still just a 5 year old kid, full of energy, and wanting to play with his friends. Are there after school activities/clubs your son could join in the meantime? If not maybe you could make one with other parents of children in similar situations. I'm sure if you look around there are others there who are advanced for kindergarten as well. Another thought, it takes a while to settle into the school routine at this age, and it is quite possible his teacher has plans for differentiated instruction in the works. If not, maybe parents could volunteer time for special lessons/small group instruction for the kids who are advanced.

On a side note, everyone's situation is different, but if it helps to know, I can say that with my son now being a middle schooler, I am SO very happy I didn't push for him to skip a grade! He is the gifted program through his school and is taking Honors Geometry in 8th grade, loves science, music, aspires to work for NASA one day and overall is a pretty happy kid! However, if he would have skipped he would have been in high school at age 13! (Imagine the peer pressure!!)They are only kids but so long and even then kids today are trying to be/act "grown up" younger and younger.
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Old 09-18-2014, 07:29 PM
 
222 posts, read 191,166 times
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Can we just let kids to be kids?
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Old 09-19-2014, 10:10 AM
 
Location: Virginia
235 posts, read 823,524 times
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nova22,

I can correlate with your feelings. My son also will be 6 in jan 2015. He is well advanced in Maths and English doing additions, subtractions ,times table etc and reading at third grade level. We had the same concerns as you, fortunately we were offered to skip kindergarten in private school when he was doing preschool. We also contacted public elementary schools, they said will watch for max 6 weeks and go from there. Hi teacher repeatedly told us he needs to be challenged otherwise he will get bored. We finally joined him in first grade in same private school. He is doing very good so far. No issues & No complaints except for one. He says he knows already what teacher is teaching. They are teaching single digit additions and two pages of reading.

My suggestion is wait for few more weeks and talk to the teacher how he is doing and request for grade skipping. If they don't do, then put him in Montessori or any other good private school for one or two years.




Quote:
Originally Posted by nova22 View Post
We're new to the FCPS school district and the public school system in general (oldest kid is in Kindergarten now, so our first experience!), and I had a few questions about the school system.

My son, who'll be 6 in Jan 2015) attended a Montessori school (in VA as well) and was doing first grade coursework, before we moved to NoVA. We enrolled him in the local elementary school and they took him in Kindergarten, even though I mentioned to the Registrar and later to the principal that he had already done K level coursework and would probably be bored in class.

They said they would watch for a couple weeks and go from there. It's now 2 weeks, and my son has been saying he finishes everything quickly in class and either sits bored, or meddles in other kids' work!

I want him to be challenged in school and not get bored and waste time. I referred to the curriculum online for K and 1st grade, and he seems to be in line with the 1st grade curriculum.

Do you think I could petition for him to be put in 1st grade? Do they do that here, and has anyone done it, and how would I go about it?

If they refuse, do you think I could pull him out and enroll him in another private school or a Montessori school for a couple of years and then admit him back in the public school system, since they start the AAP program from 3rd grade?

Would appreciate any tips/advice! Thanks!!
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Old 09-20-2014, 08:46 PM
 
689 posts, read 1,371,567 times
Reputation: 232
I have to agree with Mr&MrsD -- the social development aspect of school is equally as important as the academic aspect in elementary school. Just because your child is academically advanced doesn't mean he shouldn't be placed with his peers -- in FCPS your child will be given opportunities to excel -- it's one of the strongest school districts in the country for that reason. However, putting him in first grade now means he will be in with kids a year, even two years, older than him; especially since so many parents are holding boys back. For a five-year-old, that's 20-40% more development time. Your son may find it very hard to fit in with older kids. The kindergarten teacher most likely is still establishing routines and getting to know the children. Differentiation is such a focus of modern education -- she should find ways to challenge your son.

Also, first grade is now a major academic year in many VA systems; kindergarten helps kids learn about school and prepare for the increased work expected from first grade on. It would probably benefit your son (esp. coming from Montessori) to learn the systems and processes of the school along with other kids who are new -- if you skip him up he'll lose all that adjustment time.

But it also sounds like you might be more comfortable putting him back in Montessori. If that's the case, do it now before he gets any more comfortable in his current school.
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