Kindergarten

The Carmel Clay Schools kindergarten program offers all kindergarten students a variety of learning experiences that are both developmentally appropriate and intellectually engaging. We recognize that a number of factors contribute to a successful kindergarten experience. These include:

  • social and emotional well-being
  • language skills
  • an ability to solve problems and think creatively
  • general knowledge about the world
  • physical health

Inherited tendencies, life experiences, and individual growth and development combine to give each child a unique personality and characteristics all his or her own. Teachers and administrators embrace this diversity and assume responsibility for planning a kindergarten program that is responsible to the needs of all students with a focus on the whole child. 

Age Requirements

Kindergarten

Any student who is five (5) years of age on or before September 1st of the enrolling year as verified by an official birth certificate is eligible to enroll in kindergarten.

An appeal process is available to any parent/guardian who wishes to enroll their child in kindergarten even though s/he does not meet this age requirement. The appeal process automatically grants eligibility for early entrance to kindergarten to any child who will be five (5) years of age by September 1st of the enrolling year as verified by an official birth certificate.

A child who transfers into the Corporation and will be five (5) years of age prior to January 1st of the enrolling school year and has met eligibility requirements in another state or country is entitled to continuation of services in kindergarten if s/he has attended an accredited public or private kindergarten program for a minimum of twelve (12) weeks in that state or country immediately prior to enrollment in Carmel Clay Schools. In such cases, where the accredited program is a 2-year kindergarten program, the student must have been enrolled in year 2 of the program in order to be considered for a continuation of services under this provision.

First Grade

Indiana law assigns responsibility to the superintendent to determine the appropriate placement of a student who has not attended kindergarten and is entering school for the first time under the compulsory education requirement to Carmel Clay Schools. Placement is based on the following guidelines.

1.  Any child who has attained the age of six (6) on or before September 1st of the enrolling year as verified by an official birth certificate is eligible for first grade.

2.  A child who transfers into the Corporation, is six (6) years of age, or has otherwise met eligibility requirements in another state or country is entitled to continuation of services in first grade if s/he has attended an accredited public or private first grade program in that jurisdiction for a minimum of twelve (12) weeks immediately prior to enrollment in Carmel Clay Schools.

3.  Based upon data collected through the Corporation’s standard assessments, initial placement may be changed during the school year to best meet the student’s needs and maximize academic growth.

Screening FAQs

What is a kindergarten screening?

  • Kindergarten screening is a brief, individually administered measure given to all incoming kindergarten students to gauge the development of a broad range of skills prior to entry into kindergarten. Kindergarten screening is not a process of determining readiness or eligibility for kindergarten; all students who meet the age requirement are considered ready for kindergarten and are encouraged to enroll.
  • The screening tool utilizes standardized performance tasks, administration protocols, and scoring procedures with established reliability and validity.
  • Screening takes place at the school of enrollment and is scheduled in advance. Kindergarten teachers and instructional assistants administer and supervise all screening activities.

What information does the screening provide?

The screening yields a quotient that is a general indicator of student performance with sub-scores in each of three skill areas (language, motor, and academic). All scores are nationally normed and can be converted to percentile ranks and age equivalent scores. In addition, the screening process provides kindergarten teachers an introductory snapshot as they interact with your child in the school setting.

How will the screening benefit my child?

  • Standardized quotients and scores in each of the skill areas are used to achieve balanced placement into heterogeneous kindergarten classes.
  • Screening results provide useful information for planning instruction and designing learning experiences that address the specific educational needs of all incoming kindergarten students.
  • Screening results are helpful in identifying areas of individual development that require further assessment for educational programming, particularly for students who might benefit from early intervention, prevention, acceleration and/or enrichment programs.
  • The well-established, positive impact of early intervention on children’s current and future development provides compelling justification for identifying emerging strengths and difficulties as early as possible.

Is there something my child should be doing to prepare for the screening?

The screening process provides a means for sampling skills and knowledge that are developmentally appropriate for young children and can be easily demonstrated or observed when mastered. Because the screening is intended to capture a glimpse of your child’s genuine development prior to entering kindergarten, drilling or practicing specific skills in isolation for the purpose of improving the screening score will not enhance your child’s overall performance in a meaningful way and is likely to cause undue anxiety or apprehension. The objective of screening is best met when educators can accurately gauge your child’s present development as a basis for providing the most responsive educational program possible.

How will the information be stored?

Screening data will be entered into the district’s student information system (PowerSchool), and each student’s profile of scores will be stored electronically for future access by the child’s teacher.

Who should I contact for additional information?

After your child participates in the screening, the assistant principal at his/her school will have access to screening results and can respond to questions or concerns you may have.