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Renton School District

Kindergarten

  KINDERGARTEN STARTS sEPTEMBER 3, 2019

Kindergarten registration for the 2019-20 school year begins Tuesday, Jan. 22nd!

Registration for new kindergarten students begins Tuesday, Jan. 22, 2019. Parents of eligible students can visit their neighborhood school to pick-up a registration packet. A child must be five years old on or before August 31st of the current year to be eligible for kindergarten enrollment.

Parents can fill out the necessary paperwork and register their child now. Tours of schools and meetings with teachers will be conducted in mid-April during the “Ready for Kindergarten” events being held at each school where staff will share expectations for students as they enter kindergarten and provide families with some fun activities to help ensure that your child is prepared.  

Completed registration paperwork is required.

GETTING READY FOR KINDERGARTEN

In the state of Washington, if a child is five years old on or before August 31, he/she is eligible to register for kindergarten. Sometimes parents have children who have a birthday after, but very close to the cut-off date. Renton School District will provide an optional assessment for students whose 5th birthday falls during the month of September, if the parent believes that their child is ready for kindergarten. See your resident school for more information.

There is a wide range of developmental differences among children in kindergarten. Kindergarten teachers expect these differences and are trained to provide developmentally appropriate activities for all children.

At the same time, research has shown that when students start school ahead, they stay ahead. The district is making efforts to close this developmental learning gap by defining what skills are needed to be kindergarten ready and by involving community preschools, daycares and families in getting all children ready for kindergarten.

Resoures: WAKIDSChild Find

Literacy

• Your child shows awareness of language sounds (e.g., rhyming, hearing the beginning sounds of words, and identifying sound patterns)
• Your child is able to recognize and name as many as 10 letters, especially those in his or her own name
• Your child is learning how to identify the sounds of a few letters
• Your child understands that signs and labels convey information
• Your child can memorize or participate in reading poems and familiar books
• Your child can correctly hold a book, turn the pages, and is able to pretend to read, using some of the language from the text, and using pictures to order the events
• Your child is able to retell some events from a familiar story when prompted by an adult
• Your child is able to write some letters correctly and attempts to convey meaning with words and pictures

Math

• Your child is able to count to 20
• Your child is able to count up to 10 objects when asked “how many?”
• Your child is able to match a number with a group of objects, "That's a 3 and there are three puppies on this page."
• Your child is beginning to understand and use measurement words (big, small, tall, short, heavy, full, long)
• Your child is able to match, sort and name some simple shapes (circle, square, triangle, rectangle)

Social Skills

• Your child is beginning to manage rules, routines, and transitions with occasional reminders
• Your child is able to take turns and function appropriately in groups
• Your child is able to focus on a task for at least 5 minutes
• Your child is able to follow 2-step directions
• Your child is able to work independently
• Your child is able to take care of dressing, hygiene and toileting needs
• Your child is able to recognize and manage their emotions

Language

• Your child continually learns new words and is expanding his or her verbal vocabulary
• Your child is able to speak in complete sentences
• Your child is able to speak clearly to express thoughts, feelings, and ideas, including descriptions of familiar people, places, things, and events
• Your child is able to take turns speaking and listening in short conversations, remembering and responding to what is said
• Your child is able to ask simple questions to get their needs met or better understand concepts or directions

Knowledge

Thinking and Reasoning

• Your child is starting to solve problems (puts the big block down first so the tower won't fall)
• Your child is eager to learn and talk about a range of topics, ideas, tasks, likes and dislikes
• Your child is able to engage in pretend and inventive play (make a tent with a towel, pretend to be a teacher, cook, builder, doctor, bus driver)
• Your child is able to remember and name at least one or two objects that are taken away while playing, "What's missing?"
• Your child can group objects by using a single characteristic such as shape, size, or color (puts all the blue things together)
• Your child can group objects that go together (shoe and sock, paper and pencil)

Physical Skills

Fine Motor:

• Your child is able to use scissors
• Your child is able to use writing tools to copy, trace and/or draw letters, numbers or shapes
• Your child is able to write or copy own name

Gross Motor:

• Your child is getting better at movement skills, such as jumping, galloping and skipping
• Your child is able to throw a ball

KINDERGARTEN READINESS GUIDELINES

Parents and families have a very important role as their child's first teacher.  Children learn in different ways and at different rates. They come to school with varying skills. These guidelines highlight some of the skills children need to be prepared for kindergarten.The list below suggests ways to work with your child to help him/her be more ready for school.

EARLY ENTRANCE TO KINDERGARTEN

Students turning five years old between September 1st and September 30, 2019 are eligible to apply for Early Entrance to Kindergarten. To apply for early entrance, please contact Cheri Eckstein (425-204-2398 or cheri.eckstein@rentonschools.us). Deadline for application is June 7, 2019. 

Applications may be mailed,emailed or hand-delivered to Cheri Eckstein at the Renton School District office located at Kohlwes Education Center, 300 SW 7th Street Renton, WA 98057.  Must be received by 4:00 p.m. on June 7, 2019

What children are eligible for Early Entrance Testing?

Only children who will be turning 5 September 1st - September 30, 2019 are eligible. 

Why does my child, with a September birthday, have to be assessed when children with August birthdays do not?

Washington State has a uniform entry age for kindergarten (WAC 392-335-010) which requires children to be five years of age as of midnight August 31 of the year of entry to be entitled to enter kindergarten.  The only exception to this is our School Board Policy 3110 that allows for a special exemption and consideration to be made for students “who appear to be sufficiently advanced to succeed in the educational program.”  For the Renton School District, this is determined by the Early Entrance assessment.

Why is the process for Early Entrance so rigorous?

Because of School Board Policy 3110, it is our job to determine if students are “sufficiently advanced to succeed in the educational program.”  This is important to us because we want to ensure students start their school career successfully.  Additionally, recent research suggests that students who start school early often have difficulty with self-regulation, inattention, and hyperactivity (Dee & Sievertsen, 2015, Stocking, 2015)

What will the assessment be like?

Students will be completing the assessment with a current district Kindergarten teacher.  Parents/guardians are not allowed to accompany their child.  The assessment will measure children’s social and academic readiness.

Why do some students take longer or shorter amounts of time to complete the assessment?

Every child is different, so it takes different lengths of time to complete the assessment.  Students who complete the assessment quickly qualify as often as students who take more time to complete it.  Every child is asked the same questions during the assessment.

Should I talk to my child about going to Kindergarten this year?

Please do not let your child know that the results of the assessment will determine if they go to kindergarten.  You do not want to put undue stress on them.  Additionally, a relatively low percentage of students qualify for Early Entrance to Kindergarten, and it is difficult for kids to get their hopes up only to find out they didn’t qualify.

Is there an appeal process if my child DOES NOT qualify for Early Entrance into Kindergarten?

There is NO appeal to the Early Entrance assessment.  All decisions are final, and are made in the best interest of student success.  If your child does not qualify, they will need to wait until the next school year to begin kindergarten.

Does Renton accept outside evaluations that show my child is ready for Kindergarten?

We do not accept outside evaluations to determine if a child qualifies for Early Entrance.  The only consideration is the Early Entrance assessment given by the RSD. 

Can my child be retested if they do not qualify?

There is no retesting process. Children who do not qualify for Early Entrance will need to wait until the next school year to begin kindergarten.