"Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Locked
Topic Author
davebo
Posts: 949
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 12:02 am

"Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by davebo »

This has been quite the hot topic around the preschool ages, but I'm curious of the experience of the boglehead community. My son was born July 2008 and is in his 2nd year of preschool. I never thought too much about holding him back until my friend turned me onto the book "Outliers". Now, I don't necessarily buy into the idea that I'm going to make my son into an academic or athletic superstar by holding him back. But, I do think the theory makes sense.

Has anyone been in a situation and weighed the option? Which way did you go and what did you think of the choice?

My son would do fine if we put him in kindergarten, but there are some things that give me pause. For one, I can tell a pretty big difference (Maturity wise) versus the other kids in his class. While now it might not be a big deal, I wouldn't want that to create problems down the line. The other thing that worries me slightly is that, because holding kids back is so much more prevelant now, he might be in with kids 1 year (or more) older than him if we put him through on time.

Either way, we haven't made a decision until we talk to the preschool teacher and probably the principal at the elementary school. It's hard to know one way or the other, but I guess we'll see as we get closer.

Thoughts?
livesoft
Posts: 74628
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 8:00 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by livesoft »

Wiki This signature message sponsored by sscritic: Learn to fish.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

What's the cut off date in your district? They have been moving them back where I live. It used to be 5 before December 1 but they are moving to 5 before Sept 1. If he was born in late July, how much younger is he than someone born August 31? (answer: 32 days or so).

If your child is bright, repeating pre-school doesn't seem like a good idea. Some schools have kinder prep, but what do they do? They put the kinderprep kids in a regular kindergarten class and then make the kid repeat exactly the same class all over again the next year. I mean, really? I was in education, but some of the things that educators do make no sense whatsoever. P.S. I take that back. It makes perfect sense, financially. By putting the kid in kindergarten for two years, you get two years of state aid rather than one. Now if they could find a way to keep the kid in kindergarten for five years, you know they would.
harrychan
Posts: 1775
Joined: Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:37 pm
Location: Pasadena

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by harrychan »

We have the opposite problem. Our son was born on Nov. 2008 and as a result of the cut off, he will not be able to attend kindergarten until the following year in 2014. He is tall (wears 5T) for this age and already stands out in his preschool. He can read and write all letters of the alphabet also do basic arithmetic (thanks for iPad apps!). We can't get over the fact that he will have to wait a whole year. Some districts have transitional kindergarten but our district doesn't offer it. Our choice now is to go private or leave him in preschool where they will have a transitional program there.
This is not legal or certified financial advice but you know that already.
mlipps
Posts: 1027
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2012 9:35 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by mlipps »

I was born in October, my fiance was born in August of the previous year (14 months before me). We went through school in the same grade and we're both fine. Honestly, it's just completely what feels right to you. I remember the oldest students in my grade having been 17 months older than me (May babies). I was always much more mature than kids my age and was academically prepared (excelled) for kindergarten. I never ran into problems intellectually. I can't see the intellectual side of things posing a problem for the average student either way. Maturity wise, if you think your son isn't ready, maybe it's worth not sending him. However, I feel like I always kept up with other students even being the youngest person in my grade. I think maturity is very much learned from the students around you. Social expectations force most kids to keep up, at least to some degree. In all, I can't see it being worthwhile to wait another year.
texasdiver
Posts: 3573
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 12:50 am
Location: Vancouver WA

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by texasdiver »

As a HS teacher I've seen it done here in Texas for sports. And I have friends who have done it.

Frankly I don't like the practice when done for strategic reasons. It smacks of another version of helicopter parenting...using age to push your kid to the head of the line. And don't think the kids don't figure it out when they get older. They do. Especially at the school break points. When, for example, the child is in 8th grade when all of his age-peers are over in the HS in 9th grade. There is also a growing trend towards club sports, especially in the niche sports but also the mainstream sports. And it club sports it is age not grade that rules. For example, my 9th grade daughter plays soccer. She is on her HS team which only plays a spring season and on a local competitive club team that plays year round. Club soccer is run strictly by age not grade (in 2-year blocks) so her club team of 9th and 10th grade girls has one or two 8th graders on it who were "red shirted" back in kindergarten. The 8th grade girls "should" be in 9th grade. They know it and so does everyone else on the team but they are stuck back in middle school rather than in HS with their sports peers because of a decision their parents made when they were 4 or 5. So they get to watch their 9th grade friends go to homecoming, prom, and all the other HS stuff while they are still stuck in middle school.

It will also be somewhat uncomfortable for the child if they turn out to mature early. If the child hits puberty or a big growth spurt early and they are already stuck in a class with kids who are possibly up to 2 years younger than them it could make life even more difficult. Kids want to fit in and be like the others.

That said, if a child needs to be held back for maturity or cognitive reasons by all means do it. That is an entirely different issue from the parent who is holding back an otherwise capable student simply to provide some perceived advantage down the road.
German Expat
Posts: 721
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2009 10:49 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by German Expat »

Our son was born in August and we did wait 1 year. He is very intelligent, quite competitive but also on the smaller side. He did stay in his Montessori preschool for Kindergarten and then went to a public charter school again for Kindergarten (he really didn't notice since it was mostly new children). We think it was to his advantage and he does very well. He is now in first grade and they do AP classes already and he is in both of the ones they offer.
My wife did a lot of research (a real lot, she likes to dig really deep into things and also has friends that are education researchers) and most studies show that there are more advantages. We did not find a real downside to redhshirting Only disadvantage we found is that you will have to support your child 1 more year financially :D

Ultimately you have to make your own decision. For us it was easy because of the new school and new friends our son never even noticed it. My sister though (her son is November, different country as well) did send her (now 9) year old son. He is extremely tall and wanted to go to stay with his friends from the daycare (small town, 1 elementary school only) so she sent him. He did struggle for quite a while and even complained at home that he is not smart enough. He finally seems to do ok and is middle of the road in his class but it took 3 years. He is up to 1 year younger then his peers and even being tall there is a difference in development.

Another anecdotal more on the fun side story is that I was jealous about the older boys in my class when getting into teenage age. The girls in my class were way more interested in the older guys (I was on the back end of the cut off and we also had some guys repeating so they were way more then 1 year older).
Topic Author
davebo
Posts: 949
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 12:02 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by davebo »

sscritic wrote:What's the cut off date in your district? They have been moving them back where I live. It used to be 5 before December 1 but they are moving to 5 before Sept 1. If he was born in late July, how much younger is he than someone born August 31? (answer: 32 days or so).

If your child is bright, repeating pre-school doesn't seem like a good idea. Some schools have kinder prep, but what do they do? They put the kinderprep kids in a regular kindergarten class and then make the kid repeat exactly the same class all over again the next year. I mean, really? I was in education, but some of the things that educators do make no sense whatsoever. P.S. I take that back. It makes perfect sense, financially. By putting the kid in kindergarten for two years, you get two years of state aid rather than one. Now if they could find a way to keep the kid in kindergarten for five years, you know they would.
The cutoff in our district is 9/1 and his BD is 7/15. If we did opt to hold him back, we'd put him in what they call "Transitional Kindergarten" which is basically an inbetween preschool and kindergarten.
Topic Author
davebo
Posts: 949
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 12:02 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by davebo »

texasdiver wrote:As a HS teacher I've seen it done here in Texas for sports. And I have friends who have done it.

Frankly I don't like the practice when done for strategic reasons. It smacks of another version of helicopter parenting...using age to push your kid to the head of the line. And don't think the kids don't figure it out when they get older. They do. Especially at the school break points. When, for example, the child is in 8th grade when all of his age-peers are over in the HS in 9th grade. There is also a growing trend towards club sports, especially in the niche sports but also the mainstream sports. And it club sports it is age not grade that rules. For example, my 9th grade daughter plays soccer. She is on her HS team which only plays a spring season and on a local competitive club team that plays year round. Club soccer is run strictly by age not grade (in 2-year blocks) so her club team of 9th and 10th grade girls has one or two 8th graders on it who were "red shirted" back in kindergarten. The 8th grade girls "should" be in 9th grade. They know it and so does everyone else on the team but they are stuck back in middle school rather than in HS with their sports peers because of a decision their parents made when they were 4 or 5. So they get to watch their 9th grade friends go to homecoming, prom, and all the other HS stuff while they are still stuck in middle school.

It will also be somewhat uncomfortable for the child if they turn out to mature early. If the child hits puberty or a big growth spurt early and they are already stuck in a class with kids who are possibly up to 2 years younger than them it could make life even more difficult. Kids want to fit in and be like the others.

That said, if a child needs to be held back for maturity or cognitive reasons by all means do it. That is an entirely different issue from the parent who is holding back an otherwise capable student simply to provide some perceived advantage down the road.
Yeah, I see what you're saying. I hear a lot of chatter about how the suspected motivation (academics and sports), but I just haven't gotten the vibe that it's the motivation for people I've spoken to. Of course, they could be lying, but I don't think so.

Interesting about the sports thing though. I didn't really think about it much, but I guess Ages mattered and not grades when I was growing up to. The only downside to the holding the kid back approach is that, potentially, they wouldn't be playing sports with their peers. But on the other hand, I just don't remember that many kids that were from my school and in my grade, playing on my time anyways. Usually leagues pull kids from 5 or so grade schools so it's kind of a crapshoot.

But like I said, I'm not concerned at all with the sports aspect.
Leesbro63
Posts: 6883
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:36 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Leesbro63 »

14 years ago my wife overruled me and held back our son as she felt he wasn't mature enough. I protested but ultimately she prevailed. In 9th grade he fooled around and worked way below his potential. But something clicked starting in 10th grade and he is now a senior and was just accepted to a name University early decision. Had he started a year earlier, it is probable that he wouldn't have gotten his act together until 11th grade which would have been too late to demonstrate to a top school. Wife was right.
swaption
Posts: 1208
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2008 11:48 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by swaption »

German Expat wrote:We did not find a real downside to redhshirting Only disadvantage we found is that you will have to support your child 1 more year financially :D
Unfortunately this perspective seems all too common, essentially driving the race to the bottom. The counterpoint to this is both simple and obvious. My very small 12 yo daughter born in November, had she been held back, she would simply be less educated. One year less of foreign language, less advanced in math, etc. She also might be bored and less challenged. Is the goal education or standing relative to peers?

The above is not necessarily an indictment of red shirting. Obviously all have consider their individual situation. But I think it is a mistake to say there is no downside.
User avatar
bottlecap
Posts: 6591
Joined: Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:21 pm
Location: Tennessee

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by bottlecap »

I was held back, although I also have a late birthday. I received the same years of education as my peers, quite frankly, more in most cases.

Is it better? I don't know. I turned out successfully.

I almost think it's better to do with boys, for the simple fact that they seem to mature more slowly. By sticking them with older kids, they will be exposed to adult things by their peers a year sooner. I suspect having a year more of maturity and being older than your classmates allows a boy child to handle this stuff better. A little more maturity can't hurt in school, either.

In the end, I would think you'd base your decision on the individual child.

JT
Last edited by bottlecap on Thu Jan 17, 2013 8:58 am, edited 1 time in total.
Leesbro63
Posts: 6883
Joined: Mon Nov 08, 2010 4:36 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Leesbro63 »

For Swaption, two posts above:

How does redshirting a child make him/her less educated? Just "educated a little bit later" and in fact, perhaps, MORE educated as there is an additional year early on.
User avatar
MikeWillRetire
Posts: 437
Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2012 12:36 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by MikeWillRetire »

When my youngest son was nearing kindergarten age, we could tell that he wasn't ready. He was immature and fidgety, and we had the advantage of being able to compare him to his older brother at that age. We decided not to enroll him in the private school that his older brother was in. Instead, we put him in the local public school. The next year, we had him repeat kindergarten, but at the private school. That way, he wouldn't feel the stigma of being left back and seeing his classmates move on. He is now in 9th grade and doing well. He would have struggled if we didn't hold him back.
German Expat
Posts: 721
Joined: Fri Oct 16, 2009 10:49 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by German Expat »

swaption wrote:
German Expat wrote:We did not find a real downside to redhshirting Only disadvantage we found is that you will have to support your child 1 more year financially :D
Unfortunately this perspective seems all too common, essentially driving the race to the bottom. The counterpoint to this is both simple and obvious. My very small 12 yo daughter born in November, had she been held back, she would simply be less educated. One year less of foreign language, less advanced in math, etc. She also might be bored and less challenged. Is the goal education or standing relative to peers?

The above is not necessarily an indictment of red shirting. Obviously all have consider their individual situation. But I think it is a mistake to say there is no downside.
I understand your point but disagree about the less education. Your daughter will not learn more in school, she will just learn it earlier and can then start college 1 year earlier. She did not learn more in the same 12 years of school a red shirted child did. And this child being 1 year older might actually learn better and learn more (I said might, it depends a lot on the child). And yes, it might not be politically correct but part of the goal is relative standing to peers, you will get into a better university if you are better then your peers and this helps your chances on the job market etc. By now this race is on world wide, I know good elementary schools in China and know parents that send their children there. They did and will do a lot to get into those schools.

Also I think boys mature slower then girls. We actually don't care about team sports this much (except as a fun activity, playing some some soccer, swimming, skiing etc.) and therefore didn't really put sports into consideration. Obviously in sports 1 year can make a huge difference and there are a lot of studies out showing most sport stars being born in the early month of the year.

There is a lot that can be done outside school as well. Our son goes to Chinese School on Sundays, he and his mother went to China last year for 3 month including going part of the time to a Chinese school (different reason for the trip though, my mother in law has cancer) and we will go to Germany this year for 1 month (various reasons as well). There is plenty of things that you can do outside school.
gtg970g
Posts: 163
Joined: Tue Mar 27, 2012 11:52 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by gtg970g »

It all depends on the individual child. I was a September birthday just past the cutoff and was therefore one of the oldest in my class. I was regularly bored and always felt like I should be a grade above where I was. Many children whom are bored and unchallenged have behavior and even academic problems due to disinterest. Thankfully I did not fall into this trap myself however the same cannot be said of my brother. If your child is up to speed academically and loves learning I would be hesitant to hold them back because of physical maturity or pressure from other parents/teachers. Social immaturity and struggling academically could be a concern. In short every child is different and you just have to make the decision based on your individual child. My wife and I just had a July baby boy so we will be facing the same decision in a few years.
likegarden
Posts: 3038
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 5:33 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by likegarden »

Our grandson and son live with us. Our grandson cried often when we brought him to an early preschool for several months when he was 3 years old. He then went to preschool at a church and showed a lot of immaturity. After preschool he was ready academically to got K, but not maturity wise. So we enrolled him in pre-K at a church school. Thereafter he went to regular public Kindergarten. Now he is 9 years old in 3rd grade, is the oldest kid in his class, is very proud of himself and is doing very well in school. He is going to accelerated math class. As another example, my nephew is a math professor at a top university in Germany, he also was held back one year.
diasurfer
Posts: 1845
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 8:33 pm
Location: miami-dade

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by diasurfer »

I grew up as every year one of, if not the youngest, boy in the class (August birthday). On top of that I was relatively slow to mature physically. I didn't like it but it wasn't that big a deal. Whatever happened to the idea that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger? Oh the horror if little Johnny doesn't get to be the most popular or starting QB. Half of those bigger/older kids who had it easier ended up being losers anyway, if Facebook is to be a judge. I wonder how many of him had a hard landing when their built-in advantage didn't mean anything in the real world beyond grade school. Full confession though, I was always one of the two or three smartest kids in the class so for me it was just a physical thing.

My kids are going to start kindergarden at whatever age the guidelines dictate. If there were clear developmental reasons to hold them back or push them ahead I would do it, but not for the reasons most of these trend-following parents.
swaption
Posts: 1208
Joined: Tue Jul 29, 2008 11:48 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by swaption »

German Expat wrote:
swaption wrote:
German Expat wrote:We did not find a real downside to redhshirting Only disadvantage we found is that you will have to support your child 1 more year financially :D
Unfortunately this perspective seems all too common, essentially driving the race to the bottom. The counterpoint to this is both simple and obvious. My very small 12 yo daughter born in November, had she been held back, she would simply be less educated. One year less of foreign language, less advanced in math, etc. She also might be bored and less challenged. Is the goal education or standing relative to peers?

The above is not necessarily an indictment of red shirting. Obviously all have consider their individual situation. But I think it is a mistake to say there is no downside.
I understand your point but disagree about the less education. Your daughter will not learn more in school, she will just learn it earlier and can then start college 1 year earlier. She did not learn more in the same 12 years of school a red shirted child did. And this child being 1 year older might actually learn better and learn more (I said might, it depends a lot on the child). And yes, it might not be politically correct but part of the goal is relative standing to peers, you will get into a better university if you are better then your peers and this helps your chances on the job market etc. By now this race is on world wide, I know good elementary schools in China and know parents that send their children there. They did and will do a lot to get into those schools.
Honestly, the above is just rationalization. I understand you red shirted, and like I said it could be perfectly appropriate in certain situations. But to think that my 12 year old daughter would have learned just as much at this point in time if she were now in 6th grade as opposed to 7th grade is just a fiction.

In terms of all that you say about the world wide race, that's a state of mind that I would prefer not be engaged. One thing I am certain, my daughter knows how to compete. I won't lie, her size and age has made things difficult. But she has come to realize that she is smart and that she can succeed. Sure there is a risk she may get into a marignally inferior college, but is that really the end game? Is it more important to go to Harvard over Colgate (just for example) or what you do while you are there? I also think the whole college hierarchy thing is way overblown. Clearly there are many throughout the world that would sell their soul so that their child could have an Ivy league degree. But who's soul are they really selling?
User avatar
cheese_breath
Posts: 10097
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:08 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by cheese_breath »

You should think about how it will affect your child emotionally to be behind his age peers. I imagine some it won't bother at all, others it will. I was born in January and began school in a small school district that only had one entry time, September. My family moved to the 'big city' when I was in the 2nd grade to a school district with two entry times, September and January. That meant I was 1/2 year behind my age peers. That bothered me so much over the years that I finally went to summer school in the 8th grade to catch up to them before they entered high school. I'm not saying every child would be affected like I was, but it's something to consider.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.
Rupert
Posts: 4122
Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2012 12:01 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Rupert »

Oh my gosh, this redshirting of boys is the biggest fad around my community right now. It's Malcolm Gladwell's fault, I guess. I know parents who are redshirting boys with March and April birthdays. They're not being thoughtful about it at all. They're just doing what their friends are doing. I've had several try to justify it by saying their sons are "just so immature" compared to the girls in their preschool classes. Well, yeah, boys have always been and will always be immature compared to girls the same age. It's biology. But so long as all the boys in their class are the same way, what difference does it make? Now, my girls, who are July babies but will start school on time, will be in highschool classes with boys two years older. 19 year-old boys and 15 to 17-year-old girls in the same classrooms and school buses does not sound like a good idea to me. I sure hope you redshirting parents read up on your state's statutory rape laws and advise your teenage sons accordingly because I will have them put in jail in a heartbeat. I also wonder whether a lot of these men - yes, men, because 19-year-olds are legally adults in most states - will drop out of highschool in higher numbers because they're bored and because they can. I mean, they'll be adults who can legally tell their parents to go f* themselves and get jobs and buy cigarettes and stuff. It's just a bad idea, IMHO, and a lot of people doing it aren't thinking it through.
Rodc
Posts: 13601
Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2007 9:46 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Rodc »

I have three kids born in late summer. This was a difficult choice for each. For different kids we made different choices. My wife is a long time high school teacher, now principal who brings a wealth of experience in how this plays out in high school. I have been member and chairman of our school board and had to grapple with this issue from that perspective.

I’ll start by saying that in general wide spread use of red-shirting is a terrible thing for kids and schools. There are very good reasons to use it on a limited scale and for particular children, I’m talking now about the general case. Wide spread use is a symptom of both overly aggressive parents and parents who are afraid of letting their children face honest challenges. It is a symptom of poor schools systems: proper kindergarten classes should be designed to accept and be appropriate for all 5 year olds. It results in classes where the range of abilities is greatly and artificially expanded that makes running a classroom very difficult. In essence, every class has two grades worth of kids. Taken to its logical conclusion there is no longer a kindergarten, you have renamed first grade as “kindergarten”, renamed second grade and first grade, etc. All of this in general hurts children. IN GENERAL.

Again, in general, my wife sees that there is a real downside in some solid fraction of kids who were held back by the time they are 19 years old and in still in high school, with rules and limitations that are geared towards younger students. They are past ready to have moved on to new challenges and being stuck they act out in destructive ways or just mentally check out. By no means is the every student, but enough to make it clear this is a real issue. Added: I graduated at 18 and starting having these sorts of issues around age 16-17 and in full bloom by 18. It would have been a disaster to have been help back; I'm sure if asked think about such a thing having me in high school at age 19 would give my mother nightmares.

On a more personal note, our oldest (my step-daughter and when I started dating her mother) was very immature and was totally lost in kindergarten. She repeated kindergarten and was so lost in the fog at the time it is unclear it even dawned on her this was unusual or was really aware. No way could she have gone on and had any level of success. We since learned she was severely dyslexic in addition to being very immature; she did not learn to read until she was 13. But she is now 25, managed to graduate from a decent university in 4 years and a summer with good grades, is a well-adjusted productive member of society making her way in life. So in her particular case being held back was as far as I can tell necessary and helpful.

My sons are 12 year old twins in 7th grade. They are somewhat immature, or were back in the day, but less so than their sister. One in particular at that time, but we felt we really should make the same call for both so they remained in the same grade. They were also bright boys. It was pretty clear that repeating pre-K would be nothing more than marking time, they were not going to progress academically by holding off kindergarten. So, we sent them. My wife is firm that it was the right choice. I think it was a good choice but it is less clear it was the best; might well have been, just not 100% clear to me. But they are doing fine. Interestingly enough the one we worried the most about when we made that call is clearly doing the better of the two, crushing state testing, in the highest levels of math (and in our school system that means something, in his 7th grade class with only hints they had to discover the theorems and mathematics behind the computer security encryption algorithm RSA, a feat I would suggest is beyond most adults). So, part of the lesson here is that students who look like they might need to be held back can easily be the students who don’t need to be and vise versa. I have seen this in a couple of kids who were held back when not near the borderline and now suffer year after year from being bored since they really are in the wrong grade.

So all in all, I think red shirting can help some limited number of kids, but is often over done which hurts kids in general. Which means one has to be very careful, and red shirting should only be done when clearly necessary, not simply to help your kids make the football team years down the line (etc.)

Best of luck, I did not find these decision with my kids to be easy at all.
Last edited by Rodc on Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
We live a world with knowledge of the future markets has less than one significant figure. And people will still and always demand answers to three significant digits.
Topic Author
davebo
Posts: 949
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 12:02 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by davebo »

robebibb wrote:It all depends on the individual child. I was a September birthday just past the cutoff and was therefore one of the oldest in my class. I was regularly bored and always felt like I should be a grade above where I was.
Well on the flilpside, I grew up with a kid that was on the older side of his class and excelled academically. He ended up getting pushed forward one year, so he was the youngest in his class. My mom was good friends with his and she said that the maturity differences presented too much downside compared to the upside of being challenged.

Besides, my wife is a teacher now and they do thigns a lot differently than when I was in school. They would never resort to pushing a kid up a grade to challenge someone...I think that's viewed as the lazy way out.
mbres60
Posts: 1055
Joined: Tue Jul 03, 2007 1:47 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by mbres60 »

I have two adult children. Both were born about 6-7 weeks before the cutoff date which at that time was Dec 31. I never heard of holding back a child and happily sent my oldest, a girl, off to Kindergarten. She was always mature and bright so if I had heard of redshirting I would have sent her off to school. My youngest, a boy, was quite shy as a child. When his turn came I decided to hold him back. At the time I could think of no "cons" but only pros for holding him back. I regretted it shortly thereafter when he wanted to start learning to read. I tried to teach him but didn't know exactly how. However, other than that I did not regret holding him back. His birthday was 6 weeks from the cutoff. Once he did start school he met many boys in his class who were his age or a month or so older. Apparently this is quite common. Overall it was the best thing for him.
Confused
Posts: 636
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:23 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Confused »

[personal attack removed by admin alex. followup posts related to this attack also removed]
sscritic wrote:What's the cut off date in your district? They have been moving them back where I live. It used to be 5 before December 1 but they are moving to 5 before Sept 1.
That doesn't matter. Parents can submit their kid(s) into whatever grade they want, as long as the kid can test into that grade. You can even have your kids skip grades if you want.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

davebo wrote: Well on the flilpside, I grew up with a kid that was on the older side of his class and excelled academically. He ended up getting pushed forward one year, so he was the youngest in his class. My mom was good friends with his and she said that the maturity differences presented too much downside compared to the upside of being challenged.

Besides, my wife is a teacher now and they do thigns a lot differently than when I was in school. They would never resort to pushing a kid up a grade to challenge someone...I think that's viewed as the lazy way out.
They used to call that skipping. After a friend and I drove three different teachers from our 5th grade classroom, they moved me to a 5th/6th combo and then to 7th next year. The cost of mental health professionals (for the teachers, not the children) was reduced for the school district.

A mind is a terrible thing to waste; An idle mind is the devil's workshop.

P.S. No particular downside for me as I recall. I still was near the top of my class and still got into trouble.
Last edited by sscritic on Thu Jan 17, 2013 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

Confused wrote:
sscritic wrote:What's the cut off date in your district? They have been moving them back where I live. It used to be 5 before December 1 but they are moving to 5 before Sept 1.
That doesn't matter. Parents can submit their kid(s) into whatever grade they want, as long as the kid can test into that grade. You can even have your kids skip grades if you want.
Not where I live. My district has rules and thousands of administrators to enforce them. It might be true where you live, but your experience is not the universal experience, unless you are a higher power.
User avatar
dm200
Posts: 23148
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by dm200 »

From a purely financial point of view, one could make the argument that holding a child back adds one more year to the time you will be supporting the child. In my case, for example, I was 17 1/2 when I graduated from High School (January birthday, so I was 16 during the first half of my Senior year) and 21 1/2 when I graduated from college and became financially self-sufficient.
kitkat
Posts: 7
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2013 11:46 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by kitkat »

Keep him home for another year. You will be surprised how many parents are doing that these days. Some want their kids to be smarter..some want their kids
to be better in sports . I had my son in September. Had he been born in August, there would not have been any doubt in my
mind to keep him home another year. I've been told by others if you send them on, they will always lack behind socially. You
have more or less answered your own question. You said he was socially not where the other kids are. Keep him home.
Topic Author
davebo
Posts: 949
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2008 12:02 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by davebo »

Rodc wrote:So all in all, I think red shirting can help some limited number of kids, but is often over done which hurts kids in general. Which means one has to be very careful, and red shirting should only be done when clearly necessary, not simply to help your kids make the football team years down the line (etc.)

Best of luck, I did not find these decision with my kids to be easy at all.
Yeah, I'm trying to be careful about it. On the one hand, I know that he'll be fine either way. He doesn’t have attention problems, he follows directions, and he listens to his teachers. My concerns are partially things like poor fine motor skills and somewhat poor large motor. My specific bigger concerns are emotional maturity…he doesn’t cry often, but he’s definitely the most prone to it in his class.

There are some things that give me pause that I’m not able to put my finger on. I believe it’s mostly shyness because he takes a little while getting used to certain situations, doesn’t like interacting with adults he doesn’t know, and doesn’t really like a lot of attention on him. Once he gets rolling and comfortable with someone, he’s great. He is pretty social in that he always wants to do something with somebody else, not necessarily alone. So that sometimes leads to him following. I guess I worry about the following when it comes to bigger stuff that could get him into trouble in the later years.
mlipps
Posts: 1027
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2012 9:35 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by mlipps »

kitkat wrote:Keep him home for another year. You will be surprised how many parents are doing that these days. Some want their kids to be smarter..some want their kids
to be better in sports . I had my son in September. Had he been born in August, there would not have been any doubt in my
mind to keep him home another year. I've been told by others if you send them on, they will always lack behind socially. You
have more or less answered your own question. You said he was socially not where the other kids are. Keep him home.
I just don't think that's universally true. Nothing is. Teachers and other students always mistook me for someone much older. When I was a freshman in college, people often asked me if I was a senior. Even now, I'm one of the only 23 year old here on Bogleheads. I never had problems socially either. Not that I was "popular" growing up or anything, but I never felt out of place for being younger.
diasurfer
Posts: 1845
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2007 8:33 pm
Location: miami-dade

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by diasurfer »

davebo wrote: There are some things that give me pause that I’m not able to put my finger on. I believe it’s mostly shyness because he takes a little while getting used to certain situations, doesn’t like interacting with adults he doesn’t know, and doesn’t really like a lot of attention on him. Once he gets rolling and comfortable with someone, he’s great. He is pretty social in that he always wants to do something with somebody else, not necessarily alone. So that sometimes leads to him following. I guess I worry about the following when it comes to bigger stuff that could get him into trouble in the later years.
That sounds like me (August birthday, youngest boy in class) before I started school, during school, and today. I call it being an introvert and don't think the year I started school would have changed it. But I think being youngest, along with moving relatively frequently as a kid, made me mentally tougher than most. I'm certainly a lot less willing to follow the crowd that the average person. But who knows, if I had started school later, I might have ended up outgoing and gregarious and would be the dean of the university today, instead of staff. Actually I find it amazing that both of our preschoolers are so social, while their parents are both introverts. Good luck no matter what you choose.
555
Posts: 4955
Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2009 7:21 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by 555 »

davebo wrote:"Besides, my wife is a teacher now and they do thigns a lot differently than when I was in school. They would never resort to pushing a kid up a grade to challenge someone...I think that's viewed as the lazy way out."
What do you mean by this?
Alex Frakt
Founder
Posts: 11098
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 1:06 pm
Location: Chicago
Contact:

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Alex Frakt »

If your kids are developmentally ready, please don't hold them back. Speaking from personal experience, if school isn't at least a little challenging, you run the risk of having the kid give up on it, or at least develop poor work habits.
User avatar
Random Musings
Posts: 5890
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2007 4:24 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Random Musings »

If the child is ready to go to school, they should go to school. I've heard a few cases where people have attempted to hold their children back 2 years in order to obtain advantages. Red-shirt another year in college, that'll make it three.

As mentioned before, kind of scary having 19 (20?) year olds in high school - more boys are doing this at our school district. From what I've seen, the "maturity" issue is discussed, but a lot of it revolves around sports. Hell, when do most boys become "mature" anyway?

RM
I figure the odds be fifty-fifty I just might have something to say. FZ
kiligi
Posts: 155
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 4:21 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by kiligi »

I agree with much of what Rodc has stated but to that I would add what I think is most important to consider when choosing whether to redshirt or not. Are most families in your school district choosing to redshirt? If they are, and you choose not to do so - you are running the risk that your child is considered "behind" in school by virtue of not being as old and as mature as the rest of the class (due to nothing more than his/her age).

I speak as someone whose children were all born in the late summer and chose to send each of them to school when they were eligible to attend. All three of my children look young for their age, as well as were chronologically the youngest in their classes (sometimes by up to 18 months apart from the oldest). While all three of our children are very bright - we were told that they were "behind" where other children were in class. In kindergarten, my 5 year old was considered to be "behind" because she was "only" reading at a mid-1st grade level...I was told several times other children were reading at a 2nd grade level, sometimes 3rd grade level (and my inner response was, "Yes, that would probably be because they are 18 months older than mine and should be in second grade!") Seriously, we had children turning 7 in kindergarten because redshirting is so prevalent in our district. And the "early" reading that the school prized so much was 99% of the time coming from children who really should have been in the grade ahead of where they were if you took into account their birth dates.

While I was (obviously) opposed to redshirting - I would always tell parents in districts that heavily redshirt to do so, if only so their child is not adversely affected by it. I hate giving that advice, but seriously - it is the children whose parents don't choose to redshirt who are most heavily affected by the de facto change of kindergarten into 1st grade and so on and so forth.

Edited to Add: You should also realize that for most red-shirted children, it isn't that they are just held back from starting school - it means that they have had 1-2 more years of school than your child will have had. Parents aren't holding their children back from the schooling experience, they are trying to give their child a head up above the rest by having had 1-2 more years of educational preschool, as well as the physical maturity. That is why the effects of red-shirting do not go away as school continues. If you choose not to redshirt your child (and your child is not brilliant, by which I mean they are always working 2-3 years above their grade level) your child will be considered the "slow" child because everyone else in the class is actually 1-2 years ahead in terms of educational time and exposure than your child.
Alex Frakt
Founder
Posts: 11098
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 1:06 pm
Location: Chicago
Contact:

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Alex Frakt »

What a bizarre society we live in. First we decide that all kindergartners should be able to read (which, BTW, violates the very principles upon which kindergartens were created). Then, when we finally figure out that this is developmentally impossible for everyone, rather than admitting it was a dumb idea and leaving academics for first grade, we start holding kids back.

Makes me glad Chicago has a hard cutoff so this kind of gaming is not an issue. If the kid is 5 on September 1, he or she starts kindergarten. If 6, it's first grade. Well, I'd actually like to start my December-born son early, but at least he won't have kids a year older and younger than him in his classes when he does start.
Alex Frakt
Founder
Posts: 11098
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 1:06 pm
Location: Chicago
Contact:

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Alex Frakt »

kiligi wrote:Edited to Add: You should also realize that for most red-shirted children, it isn't that they are just held back from starting school - it means that they have had 1-2 more years of school than your child will have had. Parents aren't holding their children back from the schooling experience, they are trying to give their child a head up above the rest by having had 1-2 more years of educational preschool, as well as the physical maturity. That is why the effects of red-shirting do not go away as school continues. If you choose not to redshirt your child (and your child is not brilliant, by which I mean they are always working 2-3 years above their grade level) your child will be considered the "slow" child because everyone else in the class is actually 1-2 years ahead in terms of educational time and exposure than your child.
This is unlikely to be true. Current work on early education suggests that all of the apparent advantage from academic-style preschool work disappears by second or third grade. Young children are limited by the physical development of their brains, not by the amount of info that's been presented to (crammed into) them. You can artificially raise test scores in this age group by specifically training them for the tests, but doing so confers no long-term developmental advantage.

Of course, you still do have the issue of having your kid compared to kids who are physically a year older.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

Alex Frakt wrote:What a bizarre society we live in. First we decide that all kindergartners should be able to read (which, BTW, violates the very principles upon which kindergartens were created). Then, when we finally figure out that this is developmentally impossible for everyone, rather than admitting it was a dumb idea and leaving academics for first grade, we start holding kids back.
Don't forget the bizarre reasoning, often unstated, behind academic kindergarten: that by starting reading in kindergarten, all of our children will score above average on the statewide tests in 11th grade. It's all false, as you point out in your most recent post.
Confused
Posts: 636
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:23 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Confused »

Random Musings wrote:As mentioned before, kind of scary having 19 (20?) year olds in high school - more boys are doing this at our school district. From what I've seen, the "maturity" issue is discussed, but a lot of it revolves around sports. Hell, when do most boys become "mature" anyway?

RM
Please try to refrain from making comments like this. Thank you. Myself and four of my siblings, of mixed sexes, all graduated high school at age 17; two of the seven of us (again, mixed sex) graduated at 18. Different kids mature (whatever that exactly means) at different times. Deciding when your kid should enter school should be an individual decision on a case-by-case basis. The child's intellectual, emotional, and social skills should be taken into consideration, but not their sex. If your kid is ready, enroll. If your kid isn't, don't. If your kid is extra ready, skip a grade. We don't need to start categorizing people into groups.

P.S. - I tried to type this slowly while reading what I was writing carefully and I hope nothing in this comment is against forum policies.
User avatar
Random Musings
Posts: 5890
Joined: Thu Feb 22, 2007 4:24 pm
Location: Pennsylvania

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Random Musings »

Confused wrote:
Random Musings wrote:As mentioned before, kind of scary having 19 (20?) year olds in high school - more boys are doing this at our school district. From what I've seen, the "maturity" issue is discussed, but a lot of it revolves around sports. Hell, when do most boys become "mature" anyway?

RM
Please try to refrain from making comments like this. Thank you. Myself and four of my siblings, of mixed sexes, all graduated high school at age 17; two of the seven of us (again, mixed sex) graduated at 18. Different kids mature (whatever that exactly means) at different times. Deciding when your kid should enter school should be an individual decision on a case-by-case basis. The child's intellectual, emotional, and social skills should be taken into consideration, but not their sex. If your kid is ready, enroll. If your kid isn't, don't. If your kid is extra ready, skip a grade. We don't need to start categorizing people into groups.

P.S. - I tried to type this slowly while reading what I was writing carefully and I hope nothing in this comment is against forum policies.
Just stating what I have seen - more boys are being held back than girls. Quite more, in fact. Somehow, I don't think it all revolves around "intellectual, emotional and social skills" being taking into consideration. I bet some of it revolves around a parents desire to make sure their child "wins" in school. By third or fourth grade (academically), it all starts to wash out.

What I have seen in PA schools is that the lower grade level scores benchmarks (which are based on grade, not age) are higher, but by 11th grade, they are not any better (or perhaps worse than historical).

RM
I figure the odds be fifty-fifty I just might have something to say. FZ
kiligi
Posts: 155
Joined: Mon Jan 18, 2010 4:21 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by kiligi »

Alex Frakt wrote:
kiligi wrote:Edited to Add: You should also realize that for most red-shirted children, it isn't that they are just held back from starting school - it means that they have had 1-2 more years of school than your child will have had. Parents aren't holding their children back from the schooling experience, they are trying to give their child a head up above the rest by having had 1-2 more years of educational preschool, as well as the physical maturity. That is why the effects of red-shirting do not go away as school continues. If you choose not to redshirt your child (and your child is not brilliant, by which I mean they are always working 2-3 years above their grade level) your child will be considered the "slow" child because everyone else in the class is actually 1-2 years ahead in terms of educational time and exposure than your child.
This is unlikely to be true. Current work on early education suggests that all of the apparent advantage from academic-style preschool work disappears by second or third grade. Young children are limited by the physical development of their brains, not by the amount of info that's been presented to (crammed into) them. You can artificially raise test scores in this age group by specifically training them for the tests, but doing so confers no long-term developmental advantage.

Of course, you still do have the issue of having your kid compared to kids who are physically a year older.
Alex

While early reading gains in general disappear by 3-4th grade (You cannot tell at that point who learned to read at 4 and who learn to read by 7), the effects of red-shirting do not. And the effects of red-shirting do not disappear because it doesn't have anything to do with reading early or late, but the fact that redshirted children have an additional year of schooling, as well as the physical maturity. As such, they are groomed as apparent "leaders" academically and athletically from an early grade (not necessarily an early age). And, most of the research shows that children who are given extra attention/development keep those advantages throughout school.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

Confused wrote:
Random Musings wrote:As mentioned before, kind of scary having 19 (20?) year olds in high school
Myself and four of my siblings, of mixed sexes, all graduated high school at age 17; two of the seven of us (again, mixed sex) graduated at 18.
When I learned math, 17 and 18 were not the same numbers as 19 and 20.

In the fall of my senior year I played football; I was 16 1/2. I would not have been able to play the few minutes I did play as a scrub if the team had been populated with 20 year olds. Holding your child back to provide them with an opportunity could be denying an opportunity to another child.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

kiligi wrote: While early reading gains in general disappear by 3-4th grade (You cannot tell at that point who learned to read at 4 and who learn to read by 7), the effects of red-shirting do not. And the effects of red-shirting do not disappear because it doesn't have anything to do with reading early or late, but the fact that redshirted children have an additional year of schooling, as well as the physical maturity. As such, they are groomed as apparent "leaders" academically and athletically from an early grade
Are you assuming no one goes to college? If you want more years of schooling, get in a Ph.D. program in History. And don't forget to take the extra year or two to get a masters along the way. That should add a good 10 years to your schooling after college. That's why all the leaders of society have Ph.D.s in History.
gulliver
Posts: 94
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 12:54 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by gulliver »

i'd rely heavily on the advice of his teachers. they know him and they know his herd.
Confused
Posts: 636
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:23 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Confused »

sscritic wrote:
Confused wrote:
Random Musings wrote:As mentioned before, kind of scary having 19 (20?) year olds in high school
Myself and four of my siblings, of mixed sexes, all graduated high school at age 17; two of the seven of us (again, mixed sex) graduated at 18.
When I learned math, 17 and 18 were not the same numbers as 19 and 20.

In the fall of my senior year I played football; I was 16 1/2. I would not have been able to play the few minutes I did play as a scrub if the team had been populated with 20 year olds. Holding your child back to provide them with an opportunity could be denying an opportunity to another child.
I see you missed the point entirely. It doesn't matter if you're 17, 18, 19, or even 20 and in high school. Shouldn't we be glad that the students (especially if it took them until they were 20 to finish high school) actually finished rather than dropping out?

Other kids having an opportunity is none of your concern. Concern yourself with your own child(ren) and let other parents do as they see fit with theirs. When someone else does well, or has some kind of achievement, it doesn't mean you did worse. When one person is added upon, another person is not diminished. Oh, and the simple solution to your problem is to not play sports if you're too small. Last I checked, playing football had nothing to do with high school, which exists for academic purposes.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

Confused wrote: Last I checked, playing football had nothing to do with high school, which exists for academic purposes.
It's clear you don't live in Texas. Or Pennsylvania for that matter.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

Confused wrote: Other kids having an opportunity is none of your concern.
That's why I vote against any tax that would support schools and other people's children. I care nothing about opportunities for others.
Confused
Posts: 636
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2012 1:23 pm

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by Confused »

sscritic wrote:
Confused wrote: Other kids having an opportunity is none of your concern.
That's why I vote against any tax that would support schools and other people's children. I care nothing about opportunities for others.
Good, we're finally in agreement and can call this thread closed.
sscritic
Posts: 21858
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 8:36 am

Re: "Red Shirting" A Preschooler

Post by sscritic »

Confused wrote:Oh, and the simple solution to your problem is to not play sports if you're too small.
Not only do I like math, I like reading. Where did you read that I was too small? Big, slow, and clumsy, but not too small. But I like reading fiction too, so keep writing.
Locked