The youngest by far ...

Discussion in 'Childhood and Beyond (4+)' started by Sofiesmom, Dec 7, 2015.

  1. Sofiesmom

    Sofiesmom Well-Known Member

    My twins are currently in Year 5 (equivalent of Grade 4) in an international school in Asia. This is their 7th year of formal education (including 2 years of pre-school). They just turned 9 last month, and they're currently the youngest in their class (cut off is 31 December). We may be moving back to the States next summer to a district with a cut off of 31 August.
    Technically they would have to repeat grade 4 if solely looking at their birthday. However, had contact with district and they don't see any need to have them repeat grade 4 if they have successfully completed grade 4 so they would let them continue into grade 5 (middle school) as normal. This is my preference too as they're both performing well above grade level in a variety of areas in a highly competitive educational environment.
    But on the other side being the youngest, in this case by far, is also worrying me. Especially after moving from overseas and growing up in a very different environment. If they were behind and struggling, it would be easy, I'd have them repeat in a heart beat, but I am getting test scores and feedback from school and it makes absolutely no sense academically to have them repeat. 
  2. kingeomer

    kingeomer Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    If they are keeping up academically, I would proceed as planned.  I can understand worrying about them being the youngest in the class, socially, but for that I would wait and see how it goes.  I think if I were in your shoes, I would have them in grade 5 as well.  It might turn out, just due to life experience and having lived and been educated overseas, they might be more mature their older peers.
  3. Leighann

    Leighann Well-Known Member

    If they are academically ready for grade 5, I would agree with that placement.  I would contact the district's psychologist or guidance counselor to see what they do to help prepare kids entering middle school.  If all the children are entering middle school at grade 5 they might already have plans in place for managing that transition... I know our school does and it addresses both social issues and academic/time management issues.  
  4. Katheros

    Katheros Well-Known Member

    Usually that cut off date is only for kindergarten and 1st grade, they don't use it in the higher grades in my experience.  I wouldn't make my kids repeat a grade, unless they needed to academically.
    My birthday is a week before Christmas and when I started school the cut-off then was also Dec 31st so I just made it.  I started school when I was 4 and was almost the youngest in my class.  There were twins born on Christmas day that I went to school with, so they were the only ones younger than me in our class!  A lot of the grade below me was older than me.  I grew up in a big military town so we had a lot of kids who had started school in other places where the cut off date was different.  Anyway, I really never had any issue.  I actually kind of liked being the youngest one, except when I had to take driver's ed a year later than my classmates.  I started my senior year of high school at 16 and graduated when I was 17.  I never had any real issues. 
    My youngest son's birthday is in November and I'm not happy about him having to wait another year to start school.  I'm going to look into if and how I can get him into kindergarten next year. 
  5. ljcrochet

    ljcrochet Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I would let them start school 5th grade if they are ready for it.  What state are you moving too?   Do all the school districts in the area you are in have the same cut off?  Reason I'm asking is the district my girls go to the cut off is december 31st, but some of the surrounding towns have early cutoffs.  I know parents who have had their kids start K the following year since they were not ready and would not be ready.   I also know kids how started and are the youngest and are doing great.    Only real issue at graduation high school at 17, is going to college and not being able to buy cold medicines since you have to be 18.
  6. Sofiesmom

    Sofiesmom Well-Known Member

    Thanks for your responses. I am glad to hear that what I plan to do makes sense and many would do the same in my position. In many ways they had indeed life experiences that many children may not have had so in certain ways they are quite mature (and they have an older sibling as well). On the other hand, living in a slight expat bubble (although their school has a very local feel and Caucasians are definitely not the majority plus our building and area is quite "Chinese") puts them in very fortunate position. That includes the fact we have full time, very affordable help (though a husband who's hardly ever home so thank god for that), a very safe city with over 7 million inhabitants where they can basically go places by themselves without having to worry, but I sometimes feel they're unprepared for the "real world" (whatever that may be). 
    We're looking at the Chicago northern suburbs (district 39 which I am quite keen as I love the area - we were on the north side of the city before - and the school district is fantastic), cut off is 31 August but again, they're happy to have them proceed as normal. 
    Thanks for your insights. 
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