COVINGTON, Ky. -- Local schools are working to make sure parents are aware of a new law in the Commonwealth that goes into effect next school year, affecting when children may start kindergarten.
Senate Bill 24, approved in 2012, mandates that students must turn 5 by Aug. 1 to begin kindergarten starting in the 2017-18 school year. The birthday cutoff was last changed in the 1970s, and until now allowed students to start school if they reached age 5 by Oct. 1.
Covington Independent Public Schools will host an “Evening of Kindergarten" from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday at each of the district’s five elementary schools to help parents understand what to expect in the coming year.
During the evening, parents will receive details about the kindergarten program and a registration packet. They can take a tour the schools and talk with teachers. Principals and administrators will be on hand to answer questions about Covington’s Free All-Day Kindergarten program. Parents who attend will receive Kindergarten Activity Kit, and will be entered into a drawing for a tablet.
"We know that starting school can be a joyous and an anxious time for parents and children," said Suzanne Thompson, Covington’s director of elementary education. “This special evening is designed to learn about the kindergarten experience to help children get off to a successful start."
This evening is part of kindergarten registration week for the 2017-2018 school year, with open registration at each school from 9 to 11 a.m. until Friday. On Thursday, Covington will host student groups from James E. Biggs Early Childhood Education Center for Kindergarten Transition.
If your child won't turn 5 until September or October, you could request that your child be allowed to start earlier. That would be decided on a case-by-case basis.