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Early Admission to Kindergarten/1st Grade

Early entrance is designed for the exceptional child who is both academically ready as well as developmentally mature when compared to others his/her chronological age. Some considerations when determining if early entrance is right for a child:

  • Is my child capable of working in a classroom setting with children who are one year older than he/she?
  • Will my child be appropriately challenged by this placement?
  • What are the possible long-term impacts as my child progresses through elementary, middle and high school (i.e., beginning college at a younger age)?
  • Do I understand the expectations for students in kindergarten today?

Early entrance is designed for the child who has high ability and easily achieves when presented with new material. There is a difference between ability and achievement. Some children may appear exceptional simply because of their access to opportunities (i.e., preschool programs, parents working with them on skills or access to learning materials). 

Early entrance to kindergarten can be considered when the child will be five years old on or before December 31st.

Early entrance to first grade can be considered when (1) the child was taught in kindergarten by an appropriately licensed teacher; and (2) the child will be six years old on or before December 31st.

Steps for Early Entrance into Kindergarten and 1st Grade 

  • Step 1: Starting the Process 

    • The parent(s)/guardian(s) must complete and submit the request form  to express interest in early admission into kindergarten or 1st grade for their child.  A translated copy of the request form can be provided as needed. The request must be made by March 1st prior to the beginning of the school year in which early admission is sought.

request form

  • Step 2: Data Gathering

    • A parent must complete an Authorization for Exchange of School Student Records Form so that D31 school personnel can communicate directly with the child’s previous school program, if applicable. The program will be asked to provide any report cards or progress updates available and to complete rating scales at the school’s request. For early entrance to 1st grade the program will also be asked to provide a written recommendation that the student is on track to successfully complete the Kindergarten program and is recommended to begin 1st grade early at the public school. 

    • A parent must complete the consent form to conduct any needed assessments.

    • Other information used to determine consideration for early entrance:

      • The student has a sibling in their current grade.

      • The student has a sibling in their potential accelerated grade.

      • The student’s feelings about grade acceleration.

    • The student’s scores must meet a minimum requirement in order for students to be considered for early entrance:

      • Measure of Ability - a composite score at least one standard deviation above the mean and a full scale IQ score above 115.  An example of an ability test is Wechsler Intelligence Scale 

      • If a student meets the Measure of Ability outcomes, two additional data points would be gathered and considered:

        • Measure of Achievement - scores at or above the 90th percentile for chronological age. An example of an achievement test is Wechsler Achievement Scale.

        • Measure of Aptitude- scores at or above the 50th percentile on an above-level test.  An example of an aptitude test is Wechsler Achievement Scale.

consent form

  • Step 3: Data Review by Acceleration Team 

    • An Acceleration Evaluation Team will be formed to review the available data and make a recommendation. The team may include the following:

      • Parents / Guardians of the Student 

      • Building Principal 

      • Teacher at the grade level or course to which the referred student may be accelerated 

      • School Psychologist 

      • District Administrator 

      • Additional team members as appropriate (e.g., EL representative, Gifted Teacher) 

    • The goal is for the Acceleration Evaluation Team to agree on a decision regarding acceleration for the identified student. In the case that a decision cannot be agreed upon by all team members, the final decision will be made by the school principal. 

    • If an Acceleration Evaluation Team member disagrees with the decision and wishes to appeal, the appeal must be made in writing to the Superintendent or Designee within 10 school days of the team decision. The decision made by that individual will be final. 


  • Step 4: After the Recommendation

    • The Superintendent or Designee will communicate the decision in writing with the child’s parents/guardians within 10 school days of appeal submission.

    • If early admission is determined appropriate there will be a two week trial period.  Following the completion of two weeks of school, a conference will be held with the parent(s)/guardian(s) to evaluate and finalize the placement decision.