Early Entrance to Kindergarten and First Grade
Parents interested in having their child considered for early entrance to kindergarten or first grade should review the following steps and download the documents below. The decision to allow early entrance to kindergarten or first grade is based on the criteria outlined in the Early Entrance Procedures. A district selection committee reviews all requests. All initial requests, questions, student testing data, and parent and preschool questionnaires should be directed to:
ISD 194 Gifted Services Coordinator
Early Entrance Process
Part 1: Initial Screening
- Your child’s birthday must fall after September 1st and before October 15th.
- Early entrance is not recommended for a child that would be accelerated to the same grade as an older sibling.
- A request must be made in writing to the ISD 194 Gifted Services Coordinator. The request must include the child’s birthday, attendance area school and reason for request. The deadline for this request is March 1st.
- You must schedule an appointment with a licensed school psychologist to administer the Wechsler Pre-School and Primary Intelligence Scale to your child. If you would like to schedule this assessment with a ISD 194 psychologist, contact Molly Hammel, ISD 194 Gifted Services Coordinator, for a list of psychologists that have agreed to conduct this assessment outside of the school day.
- The cost of this test will be borne by the parent, at a cost of approximately $250-$350. Scholarships are available for parents who qualify based on federal standards for free or reduced priced meal guidelines.
- Your child must complete and obtain a full scale IQ score 130 (SAS) or better to be considered eligible. Students with a score of 125 – 129 will be considered if other criteria are met at a high standard. Parents should be aware only five percent of children obtain a score this high. This high standard is in place to minimize the risks associated with entering kindergarten early.
- Qualifying scores should be submitted to Molly Hammel, ISD 194 Gifted Services Coordinator by April 1.
Part 2: Data Gathering
If your child obtains this score, the following steps will apply:
- Submit the psychologist testing results by April 1.
- The district will arrange for the Woodcock Johnson Achievement test to be given to your child. There is no charge for this assessment. The purpose of this assessment is to determine reading and math readiness. Your child needs to score at the 90 percentile or higher on this test.
- Complete and submit the Parent Questionnaire.
- Although attending preschool is not required, it is highly recommended. If your child attends a preschool, please have your child’s preschool teacher complete the Preschool Questionnaire.
All information needs to be completed and turned into the ISD194 Gifted Services Coordinator by May 1
A district committee will meet to consider your child for early entrance. You will be notified of the committee’s decision by June 1. If early entrance is not recommended, you may request a meeting with a representative of the committee.
If early entrance is recommended, the building principal will inform the incoming classroom teacher of the placement. The principal, classroom teacher and elementary school gifted specialist will determine a timeline for periodic classroom observations.
All early entrance placements are on a trial basis. During the first six weeks of school, classroom observations will be made to determine if the placement is appropriate.
If the team determines the placement is not appropriate, your child will be withdrawn from kindergarten or first grade. A meeting with you will be arranged to discuss other options.