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Growing Up at Tucson Unified

Community School Programs Reem Kievit, Director 2110 W Brichta Ave Tucson, AZ 85745 520-225-1175 Email Us

Preschool student holding backpack

Early Entry Kindergarten - Update, Nov. 12, 2019

Tucson Unified cares deeply for our children and their families. We take pride in implementing the most up-to-date evidence-based research to best serve and improve policies and practices for our learners. Therefore we have decided to discontinue early kinder assessment and placement.

Research regarding best practice for early childhood education indicates that developmentally, it is best for children to have as many years as possible in high-quality preschool. "Older children tend to show more advanced developmental skills than younger children, changes in age of entry can have effects on the percentages of children who meet certain academic or skill standards…" (Vecchiotti 2001). The learning available through child-directed, adult-facilitated hands-on exploratory play, which drives high-quality early childhood educational settings, is what is best for young children.

In order to prepare children for success in kindergarten, the following skills are suggested:

"A survey of a nationally representative sample of kindergarten teachers indicated clear endorsement of multiple aspects of child self-regulation as being essential or very important to school readiness, including being able to:

  • communicate needs, wants, and thoughts verbally
  • sustain attention and be enthusiastic and curious in new activities
  • inhibit impulsivity and follow directions
  • take turns and be sensitive to other children's feelings

(Self-Regulation and School Readiness, 2003).

For further information and strategies on kindergarten readiness, please see Readiness: Not a State of Knowledge, but a State of Mind by Dr. Dan Gartrell,

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