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Sen. Committee and ISBE Discuss Lowering the Compulsory School Age from 6 to 5.


Senate lawmakers are looking at lowering the compulsory school age in Illinois.

Children currently must start attending school by age six, but this week a senate committee discussed lowering to that to five.
Doctor Brenda Dixon with the State Board of Education says they support the idea.

"Kindergarten not only provides children with opportunities to strengthen early math and reading skills through guided play and activities, but also to grow socially and emotionally by interacting, sharing and exploring with other children. Our children that do not attend any formalized schooling until first grade struggle because they're expected to perform on the same level as children who attended kindergarten and preschool."

Dixon says a kindergarten for all law would also help even the playing field for kids who don't have access to quality early childhood daycare and preschool programs. If approved, about three thousand more kindergarten students would attend Illinois public schools next fall.

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