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Hauppauge School Officials Change Kindergarten Entrance Age

Future incoming kindergarten students will need to turn 5 before Dec. 1, instead of Dec. 31, of their given school year.

 

Hauppauge school officials voted unanimously Tuesday night to change the entrance age for incoming kindergarten students. 

Hauppauge Board of Education accepted Superintendent Patricia Sullivan-Kriss's recommendation to change the entrance age of incoming kindergarten students under policy 5140 to Dec. 1, instead of Dec. 31 of a given year, as has been the district's policy for several years. 

"Through the years members of teaching staff, including kindergarten teachers, have asked me repeatedly to bring this forward to board to have us be in line with other districts in the area. Maturationally, some kids very young when they enter kindergarten," Sullivan-Kriss said. 

Hauppauge Public Schools is one of a few school districts in Nassau and Suffolk counties who previous said as long a child turned 5 years old by Dec. 31 of a given school year, they could enter kindergarten, according to the superintendent. 

The policy has been changed out of not only concern for the maturity of students, but staff's feelings that some students could benefit going through another year of preschool. 

"We discussed some of our students are coming to us from preschool with special needs it would be better if they had that extra year in preschool and received services there," Sullivan-Kriss said. 

The entrance age policy will take effect immediately in the Hauppauge School District.

Parents of those children registered to enter kindergarten this fall, whose birthday falls between Dec. 1 and Dec. 31 will be personally contact by their elementary building's principal, according to the superintendent. The parents will have the choice of having their child enter kindergarten or pulling the child out to start in 2013-14 school year.

The superintendent and Board of Education stressed this year's parents will be the only ones given this option, as the policy change comes less than a month before school's first day. Parents may have issues finding preschool or other child care if a student is pulled out. 

Sharon Lynn August 15, 2012 at 01:20 PM
No matter what date they choose will never be good. Someone will always be the youngest in their class. My son's Birthday is December 1st. HE should have started school last year, but I opted out and gave him the gift of time with another year or preschool. By Hauppauge changing the date to December 1st would have done nothing to benefit my child or anyone else who have late birthdays. Maybe Hauppauge should think about offering free PreK like Commack does.
CVic August 15, 2012 at 03:22 PM
It makes it the same as other districts
JenA August 21, 2012 at 07:24 PM
This is an issue that should have been raised before the kindergarteners went for their screening in May. Instead it was decided 3 weeks beofre school starts. All summer long these children think that they are going to start kindergarten in the fall. How do you explain to them 3 weeks before school starts that they are going to wait a year to start school. This is the entity that is supposed to have your child's best interest at the forefront of their decisions. Clearly they are concerned about getting in line with other districts and competing with these districts over student test scores. Further the board made this decision in the summer with little feedback from the public. The parents effected shouldn't have received a phone call the day after the vote. They should have been told before the vote. Why was there such a rush to pass the policy before this school year started?
Kimble January 04, 2013 at 03:53 AM
I also think we should have a universal pre-K. Instead we rent out the Hoffman building to private pre-K schools. I respect that Commacl schools take care of their community members and are not just out for the money. Over the past couple of years the building improvements are a joke. Did we really need a glass Jr High? Give us what we need as a community.

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