Parents reminded to enroll children in kindergarten early for upcoming school year

In preparation for the start of the 2018-19 public school year Aug. 6, the state Department of Education reminds parents to plan ahead and enroll their children in kindergarten early.

Kindergarten is mandatory in the state of Hawaii. Children must be 5 years old on or before July 31 to enter kindergarten in the upcoming school year. For example, children who are 5 years old by July 31, 2018, can enroll for the 2018-19 school year. Children who turn 5 on Aug. 1 or later must enroll in the following school year.

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“Kindergarten gives our keiki a solid start toward becoming engaged learners throughout their school years and lives ahead,” said Superintendent Christina Kishimoto. “We want our parents to be involved, become familiar with enrollment requirements and sign up early.”

The main kindergarten registration period is Feb. 1-16 to allow schools the time to process registration forms before the March 1 geographic exception deadline. Kindergarten registration will continue throughout the school year as needed.

Parents whose children attended kindergarten outside of Hawaii or at a private school in the 2016-17 school year can discuss enrollment options with their home school.

With many possible placement scenarios, the final decision for a child’s placement will be based on the principal’s discussions with parents and the appropriate teaching staff.

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For more information about enrolling in kindergarten, visit www.hawaiipublicschools.org. Parents also should visit the Enrolling in School page to be sure they have the necessary documents to enroll their child, including birth certificate, tuberculosis clearance, a completed student health record and proof of current address.

Parents of children younger than the mandatory kindergarten age have several educational options, such as preschool at a private provider or prekindergarten classes available at 19 select schools statewide. Visit the DOE’s Early Learning webpage for more details.

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