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    #21789 07/31/08 07:14 AM
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    Here's a preview:

    "Second, redshirting is an arms race. Horowitz observed, "Some people think redshirting will give their kids an academic edge." Conversely, as redshirting becomes more popular, parents can be concerned that if they don't redshirt their children, their offspring will be out-competed for the rest of their school careers by older classmates who did redshirt."



    http://www.isteve.com/2002_Redshirting-A_Kindergarten_Arms_Race.htm

    No opninion implied, just found this interesting in light of how hard some of us work to do the opposite!





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    I've read about this in many places and teachers have commented about this. A parent will complain little Johnny is bored and when teacher looks at Johnny's birthdate, he should be in 1st and not K. I spoke with a mom, whom from what she said, he was at the very least high avg if not brighter. Well, she kept him out of K b/c of his short stature. Another kid was already reading and doing simple math, parent planned to hold the kid back b/c of a November birthday (cutoff is Dec) not considering whether emotionally, psychologically, and academically the child was ready.

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    Redshirting gave us trouble. We thought about early K for DS7, but he's already one of the youngest for his grade (May birthday) and people around here redshirt boys like mad. Early admission would have put him almost 2 years younger than many of the other boys in his class. So we didn't try.

    I don't know if it would have helped us to avoid the trouble we had when he finally hit 1st grade, but I think it would have been nice to feel like we had the option.


    Kriston
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    No, it wouldn't have helped. Feeling better? grin

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    Much! :p


    Kriston
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    Red-shirting is very, very common in our small competitive community. When we moved in to our house, the first conversation that we had with our next-door neighbor (whose twin sons have nearly the same birthday as our DS) was if we were planning to red-shirt our son or not. He was only one year old at the time!!

    I was also at the pool one day and struck up a conversation with a dad there. He was going on and on about how he was fighting with the school about his third grade son. Apparently the boy was "ranked" #3 in his class, and the father was miffed about it. (I have never heard of our schools "ranking" anyone!) He was fighting with the school to have his kid repeat third grade so that he could be #1 next year!! The school was smart enough to refuse. The boy was very bright and was making excellent progress. Can you imagine such a parent?

    On the other hand, you would think that a community which emphasizes competitive academics would be better about providing services for advanced kids. But no! All the parents want is the "label" that their son or daughter is "gifted". It is nothing more than a sport's trophy to them. (hence the red-shirting analogy)


    Mom to DS12 and DD3
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    Wow, e-beth, that's really unfortunate(understatement.).

    I've heard that they rank the kids in elementary school here, too, but I don't know if it's factual.

    The person who told me that is highly suspect! smile

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    I think this is a hard situation. Just knowing the all day kindergarten my son went through (and our district only has all day kindergarten), it is almost 2 years in a row of first grade and I can see why some parents make that choice when faced with this type of kindergarten. IMHO, kids are shamed if they are unable to focus all day which isn't a great situation. Especially for sensitive kids.

    So my son has an October birthday (we have sept 1 cutoff). He is old for grade. I never considered sending him early. I didn't know he was very GT for one. But even now, I couldn't have imagined him being ok in the class he was in a year earlier and doing well behaviorally. Of course now we're going to home school rather than go onto a 2nd grade. And it would have been better to stop after K! A grade skip now would be too little too late. No matter what, he's not a great fit for a standard elementary school environment.

    I will say there is a boy in his grade that has an APRIL birthday and he is a 2nd child. He acts out all the time and he is reading a couple grade levels ahead. And he's big. This guy should have definitely not been held back. I know another boy with a July birthday in my DS's class who has highly intelligent (both teach at the college level) and involved parents struggling to read, so for him it was the right choice.

    I just wish our public kindergartens weren't so focused on NCLB and achievement, or maybe divided kindergartens out based on age, or temperament, or something.

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    ebeth, we're in much the same type of community. For the most part, though, parents red-shirt kids around here for sports - chance to make the varsity soccer team in high school and get that college scholarship. So crazy! And then the kids specialize in their sport so early that there's a fair chance they suffer a career-ending injury as a teen, or just plain old burnout. In a way, it's good that college admissions have gotten so out of hand - I realize that the world has changed, we have little control, and I'd much rather DS be happy. I don't feel the pressure other parents feel around here with an 8 year old worrying about getting into college.

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    Originally Posted by ebeth
    I was also at the pool one day and struck up a conversation with a dad there. He was going on and on about how he was fighting with the school about his third grade son. Apparently the boy was "ranked" #3 in his class, and the father was miffed about it. (I have never heard of our schools "ranking" anyone!) He was fighting with the school to have his kid repeat third grade so that he could be #1 next year!! The school was smart enough to refuse. The boy was very bright and was making excellent progress. Can you imagine such a parent?

    Wow! That is shocking. I'm not sure which is worse - the insane dad or the school ranking 3rd graders? The funny thing is if he would have been allowed to repeat the poor kid probably would have started underachieving. He clearly "gets" all the material.

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