Q. What is District U-46 early entrance policy?
A. School District U-46 policy states that a child must be five years old on or before September 1st of their kindergarten year or six years old on or before September 1st of their first grade year in order to be age eligible for enrollment. Early entrance to kindergarten and first grade can be considered under provisions of the Accelerated Placement Act.
Q. If I put my child in private kindergarten, will he/she automatically be eligible for first grade the following year?
A. No. To be considered for early entrance to first grade, children who are not six by September 1 will have to meet the early entrance requirements.
Q. Who makes the decision about whether my child can enter kindergarten or first grade early?
A. District U-46 will utilize a District Review Team comprised of a District Administrator, a Principal, a Psychologist, a Social Worker and a teacher to determine eligibility for early entrance.
Q. Why do children applying for early entrance have to be assessed when other children entering school do not?
A. Children who turn five or six on or before September 1 are age-eligible according to Illinois state law and therefore entitled to enter kindergarten or first grade respectively. A child whose birth date falls between September 1st and December 31st may be considered for early entrance but must meet the district’s criteria that demonstrate the child’s skills are in the superior range of development.
Q. Is early entrance to the best choice for my child?
A. Please consider the following:
1. The intent of the early entrance process is to offer a stimulating academic environment for students who are capable of excelling in a classroom setting with children one year older.
2. The standards for early entrance are high to ensure that students are not frustrated by their advanced placement.
3. There may be social issues that have long-term implications for the child.
Q. What are the assessors looking for in the assessments?
A. Children cannot study or prepare for developmental readiness. Assessments include a variety of activities that measure each child’s progress in the following developmental domains:
1. Intellectual development
2. Academic skills and/or readiness
3. Motor skills
4. Personal/social readiness