What Illinois kindergarten students starting at age 5 could mean for their future

EAST MOLINE, Illinois – Parents with kids heading to kindergarten in Illinois may have to start their kids right at the age of five after the Illinois Senate passed a new bill.

When kids head to kindergarten, it’s a telling time of a child’s education.  Ms. Pisman, a kindergarten teacher at Our Lady of Grace in East Moline, is a firm believer that kindergarten is a critical time.

“Kids can learn at any age,” says Pisman.

Her classroom of 17 5-year-olds and new 6-year-old's she sees hours of learning pay off.

“There are kids who didn’t know their numbers one through ten,” Pisman explains. “But now you can see they are learning to tell time.”

Pisman’s class all started school at age five, but some parents decide to hold their child back one year until they are six.

“Every child is different,” says Scott Turnipseed, Our Lady of Grace Principal. “So, there may be situations where a child isn’t developmentally ready to take that challenge on.”

But, with a new bill recently passed in the Illinois Senate, parents may have to start kids in kindergarten at the ripe age of five.

“Getting them started early helps them not only academically, but socially,” Pisman emphasizes.

And during her students most pivotal year of their education, time is of the essence.  One year could be the telltale sign of what a child will accomplish in years to come.

The bill is still under consideration in the house and would apply to both public and private schools. It would also push the cutoff date up from September 1st to May 31st, so kids with summer birthdays have the option to be held back.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.