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Research on the relation of age of admission to kindergarten and later school achievement has yielded inconsistent findings. This study examined the school district records of two cohorts of kindergartners who had been enrolled in the same school district during Fall 1989 and Fall 1990. Records for both cohorts were examined at the completion of second grade, and records for the 1990 cohort were further examined at the completion of sixth grade in 1997. The findings suggest that a high percentage of children who were enrolled in kindergarten after they had reached their sixth birthday and were thus age-eligible for first grade had problems that appeared before the end of second grade, and problems that were manifest 7 years later. In addition, both students who were held back and students who skipped grades were over-represented among the overage group. Overage students earned lower grades than their peers, but the distribution of scores, as reflected by standard deviation, was the same. It was concluded that when overage children are enrolled in school, exploring the reasons parents give for such enrollment may provide clues about areas in which schools need to provide support. (KB)

Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Elementary School Students, Enrollment, Kindergarten, Kindergarten Children, Longitudinal Studies, Primary Education, School Entrance Age

Autor: Offenberg, Robert M.; Holden, Barbara


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