Why are standards so high for children to even START school?!

Why are standards so high for children to even START school?!

My 4 year old had her “Kindergarten Assessment” test today, which is an evaluation the school gives to see if they are ready to start kindergarten. This test scored the children on recognizing upper and lowercase letters (by being able to recite them) and if they sang the alphabet song as they went, they were stopped and asked to say the letters, one by one. Counting numbers up to 50. Reciting her name, age, birthday, address, phone number, town, and state. Drawing 10 different shapes. Sorting, grouping, and making patterns.

My child scored around 41 out of 100, I was told that 71 was the average and after seeing this test I am livid. Not only are these seriously advanced questions for children who haven’t even started school yet, but the way they scored them was worse. They grouped the letters in groups of 5, meaning she had to get all ‘abcde’ ‘fghijk’ ‘lmnop’ etc, and if she missed one letter, she didn’t get credit for the rest of the letters in that group. Plus she wasn’t aloud to use the alphabet song to help her. She drew her shapes but didn’t get credit because “some didn’t have sharp corners”. She spelled out her name but the second letter looked more like an A than an E so didn’t get credit.

Why are standards so high for children to even START school?!

Which is better these days?
SchoolHome education

So ultimately the teacher came out and told me that she recommends my daughter NOT start kindergarten next year, but to wait a year and put her in a slower program called “young 5s” for kids who have late birthdays and aren’t ready for the fast paced learning environment of kindergarten. Technically she qualifies, but her birthday still qualifies her for kindergarten (she turns 5 in 3 weeks) as well and If I hold her back she will be a year behind her age group the rest of her life. She is in preschool two days a week right now.

I’m just so frustrated because why do they have to be so advanced to even start school?! I know she knows a lot of the things she didn’t get credit for, and heck if we had known what she was going to be tested on I could have taken the time to go over this info with her. I don’t want her to be behind, but I don’t want her in with other children who are apparently much more advanced than she is and have a hard time.

I just hate the way our education system is set up, she hasn’t even had a chance to learn yet.

Edit: I am located in Michigan and this is for a public school

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Comments: 4
  1. patrickandrachelnard

    Fellow Michigander here – PLEASE DO YOUNG FIVES. Young fives works how actual kindergarten worked when we were children. Actual kindergarten now is what first grade was like for us. It’s ridiculous, and I promise you the teachers hate it too. But this is the curriculum and expectations that the politicians have voted for. My children would have been LOST without Young 5s. Please please please sign her up.

  2. Dredka1001

    Of course I can’t find the stat, but I’ve read something like 50% of kids entering kindergarten don’t know their ABCs.

    It’s actually a “goal” for kids to have read/been read 1,000 books before kindergarten. (Not unique books, just in general.) If you think about it, that is less than one book a day. ONE bedtime book most nights per week. I feel like most of us are majorlyexceeding this goal.

    In summary, those standards are crazy. You’re probably doing everything you should!

  3. patrickandrachelnard

    I’m in Michigan too. This depends on the district. My advice is that if you plan to stay in this district, you ought to do the young fives or jr K fives or whatever they call it. I say this because this district is obviously pursuing academic proficiency over social skills, and it’s important that kids feel good about school and have the social skills. Hold off on sending to all day Kindergarten in this district if you can. Hopefully the young fives program is covered by the district, and not an additional cost. Good luck.

  4. evan

    Chiming in from Europe and I think this is absolutely insane. My six year old is doing math up to 20 and has just learned to read and write all the letters in the alphabet. Let kindergarteners be kindergarteners please! Emphasis on playing together, sharing, helping each other, listening to the teacher, routines, getting used to spending the day at school, colours, songs and whatnot.

    Kid getting turned down for friggin kindergarten for writing an E that looks too much like an A. Insane.

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