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Old 02-24-2008, 07:35 AM
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I've got a friend whose daughter was held back despite every indication she was ready to start K. Now she is in 3rd grade, she's really bored in her class, she thinks everyone acts "young" (well, they are young compared to her!) and her mother insists she is "gifted." Gifted? Um...no...probably right on track for a 4th grader, which is what she should be! She's in the wrong grade for her age b/c her parents wanted her to have "the edge."

I totally agree there are some kids (probably boys mostly) who can't sit still, etc. and perhaps should wait a year if close to cutoff. But for every one of those are 4 mothers keeping their child back a year for no good reason. If your child is smart, they will be bored stiff and possibly disruptive learning ABCs when 6!

Cutoff was Dec. 31 when I was in school. I know there is more going on in K than there was when I was a kid, but I feel that's been addressed...that's why the cutoff is not Dec. 31 anymore!
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Old 02-24-2008, 08:56 PM
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Bingo! Why is it that what you just reported seems like common sense to such a small minority?
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Old 02-25-2008, 06:56 AM
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I'm not opposed to girls (in general) starting kindergarten a month or so early. It's generally accepted that girls mature earlier than boys and are more people pleasers then boys. The majority of studies show that boys (in general) are not ready for kindergarten. I've had three kids go through elementary school and worked in two of the three kindergarten classes of my kids. I've seen first hand what happens to the younger boys. This is not about academics, it's about maturity level. Here's another interesting article from PBS: PBS Parents . Understanding and Raising Boys . Boys in School | PBS

Boys in School
What's the Problem with School?
While there has been great (and valid) concern about the achievements of girls in our educational system, most of the gains in American education over the last thirty years have been achieved by girls. So what's happening to America's boys when they go to school?

Moderator cut: Too much reprinting violates copyright.

Re-reading this, it looks like I think boys are not as smart as girls, but that's not true. I'm a Mom of two sons and one daughter. They're just different. If you read the above article, it's actually saying that boys would do better in kindergarten if the curriculum would change to a more hands on enviroment and if there was less desk work. But, unfortunately, most schools teach the way they do so the kids can do well on the standarized tests, not so they can learn.

Last edited by FindingZen; 02-25-2008 at 07:07 AM..
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Old 02-25-2008, 09:31 AM
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Maybe you didn't read my previous post: NO large scale study has proven the worth of reshirting kids, boys or girls. There are smaller studies and their results conflict. Therefore what you are a proponent of is nothing more than speculation/conjecture put forth by the school districts for various reasons and fostered by parents willingness to "go with the flow" or believe the schools know what's better for their kids than the parents themselves do...maybe with the recent rise of daycare generations, they do...maybe parents should just turn kids over and get them back as fully formed adults post college when the can do less damage...hmm...

"Responsible educators also have a need to know the facts before recommending treatment for a child whose only symptoms are being born in July and being male. Nevertheless, the reality is that both teachers and parents are accepting the idea that delaying school entrance for summer birth date children is sound practice."
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Old 02-25-2008, 10:49 AM
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You seem to be blaming parents for caving against their own judgement and administrators for making the rules. Do you have kids that are past kindergarten? It's awfully easy to theorize about what to do but my opinion is based on reading and my own experiences. We did have to make a decision about whether to put one of our kids in a pre-first program. Have you had to make that decision?

My kids have never been in daycare and I didn't go back to work until my youngest was in middle school and even then I'm always one of the few chaperoning the trips. Please be kinder in your responses and assumptions.
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Old 02-25-2008, 12:27 PM
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Indeed I am. And no I do not. But I do have a highly intelligent, mature son with a November birthday, a child much like his Dad who thrived being the youngest in the class. And I have heard other parents say "oh we're keeping little Johnny back a year because they say he's not mature enough" (behavior problem) or "because he'll have a competitive advantage being much older, bigger, more mature than his classmates". (parental competition gone mad)

And I ask, where does it end? Why don't these people know their children well enough to know how they will fare and have enough confidence in them to succeed and grow if challenged. Today's parents want the easy way out...many who can afford to stay home don't even feel raising their kids themselves is that important...I've heard the term "trophy kids" recently and I think its just sad. Some people think that as long as they can afford the finer things, their kids will be fine...and they're wrong.

Note nowhere in this did I say your name or imply I'm speaking about you...because I'm not. But I am also saying just because your situation was what it was is no reason to go touting theory as proven policy and rumor as fact...that it was better for you and your family to redshirt your sons, that's a fact. That this practice is fair, reasonable or even desirable, that is your opinion.

Much as it is my opinion that children are individuals and should be evaluated and given opportunites based on merit, not where their birthday falls or whether or not they possess a Y chromosome...
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:00 PM
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I don't think my son would have gotten up to speed fast enough had we sent him to K.

I'd rather take the extra year and get him up to speed rather than have him struggle for the next 12 years.
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Old 02-25-2008, 01:28 PM
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Hey I hear you and I applaud YOUR decision. That's the point I'm trying to make. It seems lots of parents are letting the schools decide for them, and then recommending others do the same, and I just think that's wrong and am presenting a dissenting opinion and letting people know that they can fight the system and that it's not necessarily a bad thing to go against the flow once in a while...
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Old 02-26-2008, 12:23 PM
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Right, parents need to decide what is best for THEIR child. Regardless of birthday or gender. I'm sure some parents face the same decision when teachers recommend the kids staying back and repeating a year for whatever reason. I myself haven't had this happen, but I know if it ever presents itself I would have to decide based on my child's circumstances and not what everyone else says or does.
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Old 02-26-2008, 04:11 PM
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C'mon. There's got to be SOME cut off date. As competitive as parents are it would start going the other way and all the parents would want to put their four year olds in kindergarten because they are soooo smart. I can understand some flexibility but let's be reasonable. It's crazy enough right now with kids almost two years apart in the same grade.

I'll tell you my story. It was recommended that our oldest son not start kindergarten by his pre-school teacher. He had a Spring birthday and that didn't make any sense to us. We both started school early, his sister was doing well in school and he wasn't one of those wild boys that liked to run around. Off he went to kindergarten. He did fine but wasn't real interested in learning to read. The kindergarten teacher recommended pre-first. We thought long and hard before agreeing. He thrived in the small classroom with something like 12 kids (10 boys, 2 girls) and two teachers. It was amazing how much he matured in the year. By the time he started first grade he was excelling in school and enjoyed reading. A friend of mine had a son who was also recommended for pre-first but chose to just send him to first. She told me later that she wished she had not done that - they had to get a tutor for a first grader! And what was worse was that he felt stupid because he knew he wasn't doing that well. (who knows, maybe he had a learning disablity) Please realize that parents that decide to hold their kids back are making the same hard decisions. If I suggest that someone stay with the recomended cut-off date (assuming there is a choice) it's not because I'm blindly touting the party line - it's because I have seen first hand what is taught in kindergarten classrooms and have been through it, three times, with my own kids.

The reason for having children start school later is not that children have gotten dumber but that the curriculum has changed. If you haven't been in a classroom since you were in school you cannot say that you know what's going on now. Heck, my husband didn't even go to kindergarten and he graduated with honors from College. Okay, I am done beating my head against the wall. Obviously, you parents know what's best.
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