Every few years the topic of redshirting arises at the State level. Legislators are currently debating the possibility of requiring children to start Kindergarten in line with the current December 31, cut off date, and not allowing the parent to choose to hold the child back until they decide he or she is ready – typically one year after the child is eligible to attend Kindergarten. While I do see both sides of the issue, I strongly feel it should be up to the parent to decide.
Fundamentally, I don’t believe that a one-size-fits all approach should be taken with children, particularly in regard to their education. As any parent can tell you, even within the same family, children have wildly different personalities and a wide range of abilities. Making the decision to send a child to school at four years old is probably one of the first big decisions parents of “ber” (as in September, October, November and December), have to make – and it is a big one that will likely set them up for their entire educational experience. While some children are ready, at 4, to sit through an entire day of structured learning activities that include reading and mathematics, and can achieve the required Common Core benchmarks, many more have difficulty doing so. You have to wonder if forcing children into that situation would be beneficial for anyone, parents, teachers, and, ultimately the student.