Kindergarten Entrance Age Changes for Fall 2024
The Connecticut General Assembly voted to change the entrance age requirement for kindergarten beginning in the 2024-2025 school year. Next year students must turn five on or before September 1, 2024 to enroll in Kindergarten. The change in the law, which moves the cutoff date from January 1 to September 1, aims to ensure all children are developmentally ready to enter kindergarten and brings Connecticut's entrance age requirement in line with all other states.
While we support the change in principle, we understand this could have an impact on families who were planning to enroll their four-year-old student(s) in Kindergarten in the fall of 2024. The tabs below review the law and detail the waiver process for families who might be impacted by this change.
New Kindergarten Entrance Age Law:
“Current law requires children to be at least five years old on or before January 1 of the school year in order to enroll in kindergarten in the public schools. Beginning July 1, 2024, Section 3 of Public Act 23-159, as amended by Section 1 of Public Act 23-208, amends Connecticut General Statutes § 10-15c to require that children turn five years old on or before September 1 of the school year in order to enroll in kindergarten. The new law also revises the process by which a child who does not meet the law’s age requirements can be admitted to kindergarten. Effective July 1, 2024, a child who is not five years old on or before September 1 of the school year may be admitted (1) upon written request by the child’s parent or guardian to the school principal and (2) after the principal and an appropriate certified staff member conduct an assessment of the child to ensure that admitting the child to kindergarten is developmentally appropriate.”
Wolcott Public Schools Opportunity for Waiver Request for The Allowance of Kindergarten Entrance for Students Born Between September 2 -December 31
For those students who will not turn five until after September 1, 2024, Wolcott Public Schools has a waiver process in place for families who wish to have their child enter Kindergarten for the 2024/2025 school year. The waiver option will remain available to parents/guardians until March 1st 2024.
The waiver process requires parents to provide a written request for a waiver to the principal of the school in which their child will be enrolled. After a written request for a waiver is received by the principal, the school will contact the parents to schedule a date and time for your four year old to be screened and assessed for developmental readiness.
Families are encouraged to file for a waiver as early as possible so that the schools can plan accordingly. Once a child has participated in both the kindergarten screener and formal kindergarten developmental assessment, parents/guardians will be notified within 30 days as to whether the child has qualified for entrance into kindergarten for the 2024-2025 academic year.
We hope that you find this information helpful in planning for your child’s enrollment in Wolcott Public Schools. Questions, as well as formal waiver requests can be sent to the building principal via the below email addresses:
Are there any exceptions to this change?
What if my child is receiving special education services?
My child does not meet the new entry cutoff date for the 2024-2025 School Year. What can I do now?
- If your child attends preschool, communicate with the program about your family's situation and how they can continue to support your child's development.
- If your child is not attending an early care and education program, consider how a preschool experience might support them prior to kindergarten entry. You can find information about child care by talking with other families, searching online, or using the 2-1-1 Child Care online search tool. Seek out possible supports for child care expenses, such as Care4Kids, state-funded preschool opportunities, public school preschool programs, or Head Start. To find out about possible low-cost programs and Care4kids financial assistance, use the 2-1-1 Child Care online search tool or call (800)505-1000.
How can I support my child's learning and development before the transition to kindergarten?
- Check out the Hello Kindergarten! Brochure for more ideas on supporting your childcare across different areas of learning.
- Begin planning how and when you will talk with your child about their transition to kindergarten to ensure a positive experience.