Norwalk changes kindergarten birthday deadline

District votes to push back deadline, prevening youngsters from entering school too early.
Cary Ashby
Jan 10, 2013

This week, the Norwalk City Schools board of education voted to move the kindergarten birthday deadline to Aug. 1.

That's the date by which rising kindergartners need to be 5 years old.

"The teachers gave a convincing presentation," said Superintendent Dennis Doughty, referring to the November meeting.

Kindergarten teachers said they wanted the district to push back the deadline from Sept. 30 to Aug. 1 because they said having students who are a few months older makes a big difference with the way they perform in the classroom. The vote was 3-2. Board members Janet Broz, Steve Linder and Ralph Ritzenthaler voted for the change while John Lendrum and Rob Ludwig were against it.

Lendrum, before the vote, said Doughty made a good point by earlier recommending the new deadline should be for the 2014-2015 school year. Broz said preschool teachers had contacted her to say the Aug. 1 birthday deadline "was enough lead time" for students.

Comments

Uputwhatwhere7

This is bs. No warning for parents that have had their child in pre school for two years spending a couple thousand dollars to send them there? Now they have to spend another thousand dollars? What kind of economy do you think this is to do that to parents that have planned and properly educated their young children and then you do something like this to cost them even more money?! How about a years warning before you do something like that! They better take a look at how well this is going to affect people and take things like waivers into consideration since they just decided to do it out of the blue!

Guy on a Buffalo

This was talked about last fall. It was published in the Reflector that it was being considered. You obviously read the stories online as you comment all the time, so, you should have seen this coming. You even commented on the Nov. 24th story on this topic! Why didn't you call the Super or a Board Member to voice your concern? You can not blame the school board and their action on your laziness and ignorance.

Uputwhatwhere7

I also have voiced my concerns to the board jack nuts. Don't talk bs if you don't have a clue moron.

Guy on a Buffalo

Here is the link in case you don't remember:

http://www.norwalkreflector.com/...

Enjoy!

Uputwhatwhere7

I remember. Also it would be common sense for the school board to give a one year warning before affecting the parents of the children involved. They have the name and birthdate a of all of them. No reason that it had to be this year. A one year warning is necessary when doing something of this nature. You must not have children at this age or have planned responsibly for their education.

Guy on a Buffalo

If you remembered, why did you lie to everyone and post that this was done out of the blue? You are tech savvy, so you would have found the board meeting was Monday. You could have called and asked if this was on the agenda, then went and spoke your piece publicly about the topic. You didn't, and this is what you get.

Uputwhatwhere7

Hey guy in the buf, this is out of the blue. To make a decision affecting for the following school year is irresponsible on the school board in this situation. You would think they would have used the common sense that Doughty had tried to use when he said it should be the following year. Get the stick off your shoulder with me buddy. Just worried about my child that loves to go to school and is ready for it not to mention the fact about the money and time spent preparing. Irresponsible is all it is. Now they are going to the polls asking for more money for the schools. I have never not voted yea for the schools but since I am going to have an additional $1000 added on to the additional money they are asking for taxes it is looking pretty grim.

Guy on a Buffalo

Call him or go to the next meeting. It is not to late to force a change for this year. St. Paul's is also an option. Start him/her there next year, then transfer out int first grade if you don't like it there. Just a thought. Sorry about your situation.

Uputwhatwhere7

Thank-you. All options are being looked at. This is just very upsetting for parents like us that have been planning and educating. Not to mention our child that has been so excited to attend kindergarten with friends made already. I think if they had waivers for this year it would be a smarter idea. Some people actually plan for their child's education unlike some parents who just see it as a baby sitter so they can do other things. That is why it is so upsetting to us.

RBN2008

I have been keeping up to date with this topic because my son's birthday is August 2nd. Some parents do not rely solely on teachers to educate their children. My son has been in preschool for the past two years and is ready to move forward. If the testing or screening is unable to differentiate between the kids that are ready to enter kindergarten and those that are not then change the testing/screening. Why make children that are ready to enter kindergarten wait. And I thought there would be more time for consideration on the topic.

Guy on a Buffalo

The problem with the date being so late is you end up with kids who can't pass the screening, but because they have the early birthday they get in. Even if they fail the screening the parents can opt to put their child into Kindergarten. That is how it was explained to me when I asked a school official. Give them a call tomorrow and find out if anything can be done.

luvmybabies4

This is upsetting for many parents that have planned for this and have prepared their children for kindergarten. My child has attended 2 years of preschool plus I work with her everyday and she is more than ready for kindergarten! Honestly this year kids should be tested so they at least have the chance to still get in. I do agree with the teachers that being older is a good thing,but to just do this starting this August is really not fair to the kids that have prepared for this and are excited for kindergarten.

Zoepoet88

This is not a good situation. I think they are wrong for doing this. Also doesn't some schools have cut off dates for sports when kids get older. In most cases students can't play sports past age 18 which will put these kids entering school at age six over the age marker their senior year. I think the kids still should be tested to get in. I don't think it should be age requirement. If kids past the tests they should be allowed to start school.

Ethan Edwards

It's a good idea to change the deadline for entering kindergarten. Why? Because younger kids, especially boys, are simply not mature enough intellectually and behaviorally. While I understand the financial hardships that another year of preschool may bring, it may be in the best interest of the child to wait another year to enter school. Better to hold a child back than to set him/her up for failure.

Uputwhatwhere7

Some children ARE ready and have already been in preschool for two years. This is an unjust ruling if they do not have waivers.

foreveryoung

High school students (grades 9-12) who turn 19
years of age prior to August 1, 2012, are ineligible
for interscholastic athletics.
Seventh- and eighth-grade students who turn 15
years of age prior to August 1, 2012, are ineligible
for 7th-8th grade athletics but are eligible to participate
in high school athletics.
• There are exceptions to this regulation, so please
arrange a meeting with your principal or athletic
administrator to review these exceptions.
Wont effect sports!

kURTje

"prevening youngsters" -----------preventing?

Lourella

I don't know why anyone is surprised they did this so fast. It is the same thing that happened with the clustering of the elementary schools. One month it was a topic of discussion the next it was finalized. They didn't care how many parents complained or voice their concerns.
My daughters both have October birthdays. So both missed the date by days for the cutoff. Both were more than ready to start kindergarten when they were five, but they had to wait a year. It stunk, but it is what it is. Unfortunately there are more parents that don't prepare their kids for kindergarten than do. Those are the students that bring the rest of the class down.

Lourella

I don't know why anyone is surprised they did this so fast. It is the same thing that happened with the clustering of the elementary schools. One month it was a topic of discussion the next it was finalized. They didn't care how many parents complained or voice their concerns.
My daughters both have October birthdays. So both missed the date by days for the cutoff. Both were more than ready to start kindergarten when they were five, but they had to wait a year. It stunk, but it is what it is. Unfortunately there are more parents that don't prepare their kids for kindergarten than do. Those are the students that bring the rest of the class down.

Voice_Of_Reason

I do not have a problem with the decision they reached. The problem is the timeframe (as pointed out by others). Along with the short-sighted decision to cancel school for the DISTRICT for the volleyball Semi-Finals, they continue to make decisions that affect how WE can be influenced to vote on the emergency ballot coming up in May. It's just common sense when changing a requirement like this to make it effective in the 2014-15 school year. But sometimes our Superintendent/School Board do not always utilize common sense.

luvmybabies4

Agree with you completely!

AAHFRMC

In the state of Ohio, you can still have your child tested for early admittance into kindergarten if you feel he or she is ready, but does not meet the age requirement. This is done by calling the school counselor and they will set up a meeting with your child and the district psychologist. They will perform IQ testing and if your child is above average, they can go to school even if they are only 4.

Windy

Those parents who are irresponsible and force their children to attend Kindergarten, even though they're not ready yet, just because they're "old enough", have ruined it for all of the responsible parents. Kindergarten has become "free babysitting" for so many. They don't care if little Johnny has to repeat Kindergarten as long as he's out of their hair and they don't have to pay for it. Unfortunately, poor little Johnny now hates school for the rest of his life because he was forced to attend when he was not developmentally ready and he gets frustrated and feels stupid. It's sad.