ERIC Number: ED078946
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1973-Mar
Reference Count: 0
Evaluating an Alternative to "Junior Kindergartens": Research on Four-Year-Olds Who Enrolled in Regular Classes in York County, 1969-72.
York County (Canada) rolled back the age requirement for kindergarten admission so as to permit the enrollment of four-year-olds wherever space was available. This was done because kindergarten enrollment in many communities were declining and if junior kindergartens were established in all community schools, many would have very small enrollments. Early admission was intended as a right wherever less than 25 "regular age" students were enrolled, and no screening, other than for seniority and special home situations, was intended. Two studies have been undertaken to assess the progress of the early admission child. A longitudinal study of the academic progress of the early admission students of 1969 and their peers is in its third year. Students have been tested in grades 1 and 2 with the Canadian Cognitive Abilities Tests and the Metropolitan Achievement Tests. The groups performed comparable on the grade 2 tests. The second study was concerned with the early admission population during 1971-72. It was discovered that only 29 of 56 elementary schools with kindergartens had enrolled younger students. Of those who were enrolled, 20% were kept in kindergarten for another year, 9% were advanced to a kindergarten-primary mixed class or promoted conditionally to grade 1. A followup study of those retained revealed no apparent indication of increased mobility due to nonpromotion. Questions remaining include: (1) whether early admissions have really eased pressures for a junior kindergarten program; (2) whether a junior kindergarten would better serve the younger students; and (3) whether screening prospective early admissions is pedagogically or politically feasible. (KM)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: York County Board of Education, Aurora (Ontario).
Note: Speech given before the Gamma Nu Chapter, Phi Delta Kappa, March 1973