I don't think that the cut-off dates have ever changed here and think that for all of NY it's 12/1...although I wouldn't be surprised if private schools might have a different date.
NYC public schools have a cut-off of 12/31. You're not allowed to delay a child here, so if you elect to send your 5-year-old (or 4-year-old with a late birthday) to preschool another year before public school, then he/she HAS TO enter 1st grade the next year, skipping kindergarten. I know people who have elected to do this, with the reasoning that another year of pre-K trumps kindergarten.
My DD's bday was two weeks shy of the 9/1 cutoff for her school. If I had asked her preschool teachers, I am sure they would have said to hold her back, that she was not socially ready for K. At the end of the pre-k school year (3 mornings a week), she still would not talk to her teachers and barely any kids. I seriously debated holding her back due to this. At the same time, she was more than academically ready for K.
After the second day of kindergarten, she blossomed. She developed a best friend immediately, took a shining to her teacher, and has since then developed friendships with a large number of kids. It was the best choice we could have made to give her that little push. As it stands, there is another little girl in her class with the same birthday but L is a year older. It is amazing to see the difference in the two girls and it further cemented my decision to put M in school now versus next year.
I didn't realize it differed so much by state. Here in Ohio, the Ohio Department of Education has the cut-off date "to be determined by the district but no later than Sept 30".
Indiana's cut off date is the earliest at July 1, but Indiana's Department of Education states
"School corporations deal with entrance issues and the appeal process in a variety of ways. For example, many school corporations will allow children to be enrolled in kindergarten who will be five years of age by a specific date such as September 1, space permitting. It is important to remember that these school corporations are not changing the entrance date but are creating criteria for the appeal process for early entrance into kindergarten"
My family lives in IN and the district my sister is in allows entrance for kids with July birthdays simply at the request of the parent because they have room in the districts.
I admit I haven't done much research for here in WA, because we're not going to send DD2 early, but I do know that children must turn 5 on or before August 31 to enroll in public schools. Teachers and other parents have told us that children who turn 5 between Sept 1 and 30 can be evaluated by a psychologist (cost = $600) and if the psychologist deems the child is ready, he/she can then be enrolled in K early.
Our girls go to a private school, and in general, they do not allow any deviations from their August 31 cutoff. However, they did say that since DD2's birthday is September 1 and she is mature and academically ahead (plus, she is the biggest kid in her class despite being the youngest), they would let us make the call on whether or not to have her in Pre-K or K this fall.
I have two sons with summer birthdays (late june and early july). I never hesitated to send DS1 to kindergarden, he was both emotionally mature and academically ready and he is thriving in first grade. However, I am opting to keep DS2 in preschool one more year. He demonstrates the academic readiness skills but socially he is slightly immature and tentative in a large group. I have consulted with many teachers and parents on this issue. Social readiness is a very subjective area to assess and most people have told me to go with my gut feeling. Every parent who has chosen to hold their child back has always said that they have never regretted the decision. The social/emotional component in my opinion is the most salient reason to hold a child back, barring significant delays in academic readiness. Kindergarten teacher are typically prepared to teach to a large range of cognitive abitilies. As a previous poster stated the social immaturity becomes more of an issue in later years (jr. high,high school, college). I feel confident that I am making the best choice for my son and by not sending him it is NOT a statement of not wanting to push/challenge him academically. I am hoping that an extra year of preschool will help him to develop increased self confidence and improve his social skills. Let's face it, good social/behavioral skills are at least as important to future success as cognitive abilIities.
but it seems that it would make sense to have the same cut-off throughout the country, especially since the kids are all going to end up in college together anyways.
ITA 100% It drives me bonkers that there is a kid in my son's class who turned 6 in Dec. and and another kid who just turned 5 in Oct. The teachers don't like the wide age ranges, either. They are actually moving towards changing the cutoff date here in CT exactly because of that reason.
I've always been under the impression that the cut-off dates are related to classroom size and children in the district. So districts move the date back when they need to cut the pool of kids heading into school. It typically then stays at that point until they get to a low point, where they move it later in the year to fill up the classroom.
Is that just in your state? That hasn't been my experience at all living in IL and now in CT. ???
Our cutoff is December 31 (4 for junior kindergarten) and DD's birthday is December 21. We haven't hesitated in enrolling her. Kindergarten is supposed to be for learning and there will be a WIDE range of kids in the class irregardless of age.
In order to stop people from holding kids back - in our board if you hold your kid out the year they are supposed to go (so fro DD 2011 we held her), then when you DO enroll her they put her with her peers anyway (in 2012 she would go to Kindergarten, not into JK with younger kids).
Tara and Terry: May 13, 2006
Elizabeth Vittoria: December 21, 2007