Considering Half-day Private Kindergarten or Holding Back 5Year Old, Need Advice

Updated on April 20, 2008
K.C. asks from Plano, TX
7 answers

My middle son is turning 5 next month and should start Kindergarten this Fall. I had him in a Pre-K program in Lewisville until we moved April 1 to Plano. Although he liked school, we had a lot of issues, mainly disciple. My son has poor impulse control, emotionally overreacts to situations, had trouble transitioning (switching gears) from one activity to the next and has difficulty following directions. At home and at school he lashes out either physically or with words and can be difficult to control. I can honestly say that I don't think he'll be able to handle full day Kindergarten.

I am considering and researching 2 options, either send him to a 1/2 day Kindergarten or keep him back and him start Kindergarten when he's 6. I've been told the latter is called a "year to grow". Does anyone know of a local private Kindergarten program that offers a half day program that is not a Montesorri school? Ideally, I don't want to drive more than 10 miles. I'm in the Oakwood Glen neighborhood at Legacy & Custer.

Has anyone else held their child back for a year to grow? Did you send them to a Pre-K program? Was it successful? I'm exploring this option too. My child definitely needs more time to mature. Any cons to this?

Home schooling is not really a viable option for my family either. I know myself. I will quickly lose my patience with him and it will not be beneficial for him or worth the stress for me.

Any advice would be appreciated.

****I just want to mention that I'm not against traditional Montessorri education. I think that allowing a child to learn at their own pace and without pulling them away is fantastic. My problem is that that type of education is not available through high school. My son has difficulty adapting, so changing from a Montessorri to public school will prove very difficult for him.

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So What Happened?

Thank you for the great responses. The one response I seemed to get was to keep him back in Pre-K for another year. That was the way I felt in my gut was the right thing for him, but it was great to hear individual experiences and reasons. They were very reassuring, I was relieved to hear that I am not the only one in this situation. Our life has been stressful these past 2 years and we certainly have not made it better by moving again so soon. I feel the next year will be more settled which I know will also help his attitude. Right now I am looking into a couple of local pre-schools for him hoping to find the right fit. Thanks again Mamas!

More Answers



answers from Dallas on

This is a very common issue for boys. I would recommend holding him out of kinder for a year and keeping him in pre-k. Check with local churches and even the school district about different pre-k programs. Lots of kids are 6 when they start kinder- he won't be unusual. It is a better choice than having problems all year and possibly having the school hold him back. My neighbor went thru this and he is in kinder now and doing great. Extra pre-k was definitely the right choice for him.



answers from Dallas on

My daughter turns 5 in june and we had the option to send her to kindergarten or Prek-5. I really struggled with the decision. Most of the kids that would be in her kindergarten class would be 8-10 months older. Many moms kept telling me that she was "ready".....well, yes, she was extremely bright but I wanted her to be more than just "ready". I wanted her to be at the top of her class and to experience success early on developing that attitude. Also, an educator gave me the best advice...and this is for you also....she said that she hears alot of moms say they wish they would have held their child back a year and that she never hears a mom say that they wish they wouldn't have held their child back......That sealed the deal for me personally. So my daughter is attending Legacy Christian Academy preK-5 class this fall. good luck with your decision. don't worry about what other people what is right for your son!



answers from Dallas on

There is a great Kindergarten at Grace Evangelical Free Church in Allen. The school is a preschool & kindergarten program. Check out their website at, then go to ministries and GEM Express Preschool & Kindergarten. My daughter goes there for preschool and it is a great atmosphere with a really great staff.

Good luck!



answers from Dallas on

Hi, this is a hard decision to make. We struggled with the same question with our daughter. Her birthday is in August, so she is right on the border of eligibility. In the end, we decided another year of pre-school would be best for her. (At the time, we were in First Baptist pre-school program plus full day care. LOVED IT!)

With her Kindergarten year almost over, we are 100% certain it was the right decision for her. She has done fantastic this year! The extra year of "maturity" really made all the difference in the world.

Good luck with your decision, I'm sure whatever you decide will be the best thing for your child.



answers from Dallas on

I didn't think my daughter was ready for a 7 hour a day class when Kindergarten sign-up came around. We couldn't afford any of the private schools which offer half-day kindergarten so we ended up choosing to homeschool, but I understand it's not for everyone.

I've recently heard lots about having children wait for kindergarten until they're six & it seems a really smart option. There's tons of information about it on the web & all the reasons to wait seem like great ones.

Good luck in making your decision!



answers from Dallas on

Hi K.,
I'm also originally from california. I was born and raised in northern calif!! I do miss it but love texas too. Do you think that your son is acting out b/c of changes recently? If that's the case I don't know if I would hold him back. I know that typically boys mature slower than girls but perhaps going to kindergarten with a routine and schedule enforced by other adults would help him. Sometimes peer pressure does the trick too. Academically, is he on track or do you think that he could benefit from another year of pre-K? you said in your post that he is difficult to control. I don't know anything about your son or how he is acting so please don't take this the wrong way but have you spoken to your pediatrician about his behaviour? perhaps something medical or psychological is influencing his behavior. My daughter is in pre-k 3 days a week, 9am-2pm. its a perfect time for her. you could look into that option. there are alot of private schools around. we're in mckinney so that might be too far for you to drive. but if you're interested take a look at concordia christian academy. we love it! it is a very nuturing, warm learning environment. good luck to you.



answers from Dallas on

as a former pre-k and k teacher i would say send him through pre-k for another year. these days kindergarten is a very important foundation and i would hate for him to miss valuable learning time dealing with behavior issues. i would not recommend keeping him home b/c he needs to get used to the structure, scheduling and socialization of school. if you plan to send him to a public school pre-k i would get in contact with them now and work together with the school counselor to try to make the year as successful as possible. she could give you ideas for helping him deal with transitions, control his impulses and maybe have a behavior plan developed before the year starts so he knows what to expect.

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