35 answers

What Age Do You Send Your Child to School?

This question is for my friend whose daughter is 5. she was told today by people we both work with that her daughter can be taken if she doesn't send her to school at the age. 5

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Schools have a cut off date for when the childs birthday falls. That would be something to look into. Also part time or full time Kinder. That can also play a big part. But about the child being taken? I never have heard such a thing and my oldest are 10

J., in the state of PA a child does not legally have to attend school until the age of 8. Now a days people look down on that because children are going to school early because both parents work. I am a kindergarten teacher and would recomend she send her daughter to kindergarten because children learn to read, write, count to 100, add and subtract before going to first grade. But legally kinderfgarten is not mandatory.


Is there a reason that she does not want to send her? Yes, they start at 5. (The child needs to be five by the beginning of sept to start kindergarten.) If i were her i would register her daughter immediatly.

More Answers

I am assuming your friend lives in PA. This info is taken directly from the PA Dept of Ed website.

Compulsory School Age:

Compulsory school age refers to the period of a child's life from the time the child enters school as a beginner which may be no later than eight years of age until the age of 17 or graduation from a high school, which ever occurs first.

This page has info on compulsory attendance and truancy.

If you scroll down to part V. Proceedings and Penalties for Violation of Compulsory Attendance Requirements you will find more specific information about how school districts are to handle violations of the above law.

Hope this helps.


As one of those mom who has decided to "hold her child back like that" I have to say those are harsh words, Dee. I normally don't get worked up about what others say on here, but you hit a nerve. You have no idea why that woman wants to hold her child back. I, for one, am not sending my 5 year old to kindergarten this year and I certainly do not need counseling because of it. Though my reasons are nobody's business I will share them. First, I feel that he is timid and unsure of himself when compared to his peers. I don't think he is emotionally ready for kindergarten - it's a lot more involved than it was 35 years ago when I was in kindergarten. Second, his medical issues may cause him to miss a lot of school. I think you can see where that might cause some difficulties for him. I don't want the beginning of his formal education to be marked by insecurities and days upon days of missed classes. By this time next year, I expect he will be more emotionally mature, have more confidence in his abilities, and be healthy enough to attend school on a regular basis. His preschool teacher had the same concerns I did and she actually initiated the conversation with me. I assure you we put many hours into weighing the pros and cons of the situation and came to the "healthy" decision of waiting one more year before sending our son to kindergarten. So as you can see there ARE reasons to hold a child back one year and there are plenty of teachers like my son's preschool teacher who feel that sometimes that is the right decision. Please don't be so harsh when you don't have all the details.

2 moms found this helpful

Dear J.,
Tell your friend not to worry in the least! What baloney! Why are they fear mongering your friend?

In PA, Kindergarten is optional, and most schools would not start a first grader below the age of 6, in fact most require that the child be 6 before entering first grade AND on top of that in PA you can "opt out" of traditional school and "home-school" your child.

For your friend to get accurate information, I suggesst she check the PA government website or call her local school district or speak with her local representative. I am still befuddled as to why her colleagues would use such a scare tactic with your friend. Doesn't sound like a very kind work environment to me.

ann m.

1 mom found this helpful

That depends on what state they live in. In some states Kindergarten is mandatory and some it is not. Also, most states have a "cut-off" for when the child actually turns 5 as to when they can start school. If the state finds out that a child is not registered in a school and according to state laws should be, they will open a case to research the accusation. Good Luck.

legally they dont have to start school until i believe 7 or 8, most people now are sending their kids to kindergarten by 6, my son was 5 1/2 and i had considered holding him back until this year, but he adjusted really well and i am glad that i went through with sending him. he is one of the youngest in his class though, most of his classmates are turning 7 this year, where he wont turn 7 until the end of april

Lisa T has gotten you specific state information--go with that!

Check with the school district. If her child is not ready for kindergarten, she can wait, and send her at age 6. I did that with my 2nd child, and sometimes wish I had with child #4. Sometimes that extra year of maturity is a plus, especially if she the child is an August birthday, which would make her the youngest in the class.

If Mom truly doesn't want to send her child to school, there are a host of cyber school programs that they can do at home, and they require the work -- daily, just like school, and if you are going to take a trip you have to notify them for permission and an excused absence, just like "real school". Also, as long as you have DSL, the cyber schools will generally cover the cost of the PC and the internet for the child to use. It's a good deal.

There are a lot of arguments from both sides (advocates of earlier or later admission). No one should forget, that parental care, especially in early years of young human, is something that could not be overestimated. It is not only the matter of education, but also emotional development of child.


I agree with Denise, go with Lisa's advice. Also, you friend might want to consider if her daughter is ready for school. My son was academically ready, but not socially ready. My daughter was socially ready, but not academically, both had turned 5 in July.
I was never ready to send them.

1 / 3
Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.