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    Joined: Sep 2008
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    Originally Posted by 22B
    Originally Posted by SAHM
    With a truly passionate sporty boy, I almost think red shirting might be a must these days.

    Could someone explain this?
    Such a boy is likely to want success in competition. If most potential competitors are red-shirted, the argument goes, yours should be too because otherwise he'll be competing against bigger stronger children, not get selected for teams, and so not get what he needs for long-term success.

    Have to say, though, here school sports is arranged by age not school year, so red-shirting would be ineffective. My DS isn't skipped, but being one of the youngest in the year he played last school year in the "under 9" games rather than the "under 10" ones most of his classmates played in. You don't eliminate the advantage of being born in the best month, but it would get rid of the worst excesses.

    Last edited by ColinsMum; 08/18/13 01:06 AM.

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    It doesn't happen here. It is illegal to start school before 5 but you can start any day you like between your 5th and 6th birthdays. If your birthday is in the second half year you do longer in the first year. If you start at 6 you get put in the class you would have been in if you had started the day you turned 5 (most kids start on their fifth birthday or the day after). Ds6 is one day short of his schools cut off and ds4 will be one month over. Ironically due to variations in holidays they will both start on the first day of the second term. I will have to fight not to get ds4 held back a whole extra year but legally the cut off date is two months later than the one the school uses.

    Okay that was mainly to get things straight in my head.

    Social type sports are often done by school year y1/y2, y3/y4 etc but high school and competitive stuff is usually by age. And ethnicity is often a more telling factor than age in our more popular sports anyway. Ds6 will be ok, ds4 will be too small anyway.

    Last edited by puffin; 08/18/13 01:18 AM.
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    Redshirting is very common in our area. 2 of the kids in my neighborhood with early June birthdays were held back a year before starting K, and the school district recommends holding back children with summer birthdays even though the cut-off is Sept 10. In our district, the redshirting is not being done for sports, but for academics. They make a huge deal out of making sure the kids are "ready" for kindergarten by requiring kindergarten readiness testing, and if a child is born during the summer they almost always recommend waiting a year regardless of the results.

    It does set up a strange situation in the school, with each class having a wide range of ages. For example, in my sons' first grade classes, there will likely be kids who were born between June 2006 and early September 2007, which is a sixteen month age spread.

    Sports other than the official middle school/high school teams are done by age, not grade, so redshirting isn't possible.

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    I don't think we have much redshirting around here, but there was no way we would even have put DS in the class he should have been in, much less the one after that. His birthday is six days past the cutoff, so the year he turned six he should have just started Kindergarten, but he skipped that and went into first grade. If we had had any reason to consider redshirting, that would have put him in Kindergarten at seven instead of first grade at six, which would have been insane. He's never been a sporty kid, though, so academics were our only concern.

    With another grade skip under his belt, now he's going into 7th grade at ten, turning 11. He's taking up cross-country and track, but size isn't too much of a concern there, so it still works out.

    But he would never have been the size of his classmates even if he hadn't skipped, so there is nothing we could have done even if we'd wanted to.

    I love the ideas mentioned above, in countries that run sports by age -- the only improvement there would be to run sports by size! Of course, if a small kid had his heart set on football and had to wait years to be big enough for it, that might not be good.

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    Redshirting is common around here, if the anecdotes I hear are anything to go by. And for my DD8, it seems to be working in her favor. We skipped her to 4th grade, where she's around kids up to two years older. So far, that seems to be a better social match, and saves us from having to skip her twice.

    Check with me in five years, when we see whether a second skip was needed anyway in order to keep up with her intellectual growth.

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    There is a good deal of red-shirting here in our area and most people are very upfront that it is for athletic reasons. I am not sure which came first though: the red-shirting for social reasons or the realization that having your kid start late would help them excel in sports.

    My DS9 (incoming 4th grader) has a mid-August birthday and has been the youngest or near youngest in his grade in public school. DD6 (incoming 1st grader) has a late August birthday (two days ago) and will be the same.

    Sports out here goes by either grade or age, depending on the sport.
    DS9 is not a really sporty type (tall but beanpole thin and prefers legos and tetherball) so those that go by age are generally good for him but for the fact that, last year in soccer, while he was in third grade, there were some first graders on his team. When he plays basketball, which is by grade, there are kids that are 2 years older than him and are HUGE and often have about 30 pounds on him.

    DD6 is sporty. Because she missed the soccer cutoff by 18 days, she will play up in order to play with girls in her grade and skill level. Otherwise, as an incoming first grader who missed the cutoff, she'd be playing with kinder or pre-k kids. In basketball, she was the only girl that played so she played in a boys league. Her first year was on a kinder team-the boys were older but she still excelled. This past summer season, she played in a first-second grade league and it was totally different. Many of the boys she played against were 2-3.5 years older than her (due to her late birthday) and were HUGE. It was a problem.

    The interesting thing I see here is that many parents hold their kids back in school but push them several levels higher in athletics (e.g. wanting their machine pitch rookie Little Leaguer to play up two levels or more to AA the next year) just to give them extra experience playing at a high level whether they are ready or not.

    Does anyone else see this, too?

    We had our DD play up in soccer just to allow her to be with kids in her grade.

    I am not passing judgment on this environment out here. It just is what it is.

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    It's super common in my district. My two of my kids are young for the grade. They are 6 & 13 starting 2nd/9th(credit wise a sophomore) next week. They both have friends 2 years older in the same grade. My 6 year old has large number of friends already 8 and more than one turning 9 by the end of 2nd grade. It makes me a little crazy as most of them are doing it for the academics alone. The sports team stink here and the GT program is fairly competitive and the admissions test used are grade based. I know one family the child was sick and they gave it another year at home for good reason. They really believe the children will have better placement, grades, and college admission test scores later. Hmm… someone ought to show them the research on the topic.

    It's rather annoying to listen to the parents talk about their kids results. It's not that impressive that your kid a year or two older than the norm for the grade can out score kids of the appropriate age for the grade. Mean while if I mention my young for the grade child out scored theirs I get a snarky response or look. Hence, I don't mention it. I'm guessing if the district would age base admission testing the red shirting would diminish greatly. Excuse the vent, I find the volume of redshirting super annoying. There are legitimate and valid reasons for some kids to go both early or late to school. Getting the edge in sports or academics isn't one of them in my book.

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    Originally Posted by OCJD
    The interesting thing I see here is that many parents hold their kids back in school but push them several levels higher in athletics (e.g. wanting their machine pitch rookie Little Leaguer to play up two levels or more to AA the next year) just to give them extra experience playing at a high level whether they are ready or not.

    Does anyone else see this, too?

    We had our DD play up in soccer just to allow her to be with kids in her grade.

    I am not passing judgment on this environment out here. It just is what it is.

    I've made the comment before that I think we have more in common with the parents of gifted athletes than just about any other group of parents.

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    I found that many people in NJ like to redshirt, girls and boys. Just to make sure their kids are in the top tier, even if they could handle K at the regular time.

    There have been many articles written about it because these kids can drive in 10th grade, go through puberty before other kids, which can be awkward. Even the dating issues. If you have skipped girls dating redshirted boys in high school, that would make me uncomfortable. But how do you tell your kid not to date the 19 year old in your class because she is only 15. They are in the same grade.

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    Red shirting is very common in our school & district, too. My boys are young for grade, but even though they're several months from the cutoff there were only two boys younger than them in their elementary school grade.

    I find it really annoying that other parents want to give their kid an "advantage" by making sure my kid is younger and smaller.

    The thing is, I think the red shirted boys are uncomfortable about it, at least from what I've seen. They're forced to hang around kids younger than them in school, yet so much smaller. I don't think it helps them socially, at least not most of them-- they're awkward about being held back! And it certainly doesn't make them sail to the top of the class academically. I think it's just really misguided.


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