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Preparing Your Child for Kindergarten in Missouri

As your child nears the age for kindergarten, you might not be sure exactly what you need to do to make sure that he/she is prepared for enrollment in Missouri Public Schools. Here are a few tips and resources to help get you started: 

Age

In order to enroll in kindergarten in Missouri, you son or daughter should be five years old before August 1st of the upcoming school year.  What this means is that if your child turns five in September or October, you can enroll him/her in kindergarten the following school year. 

Both St. Louis and Kansas City School Districts may accept later birth dates, so be sure to check with your local school district to confirm your district’s birth date cutoff. 

Kindergarten Transition Plan

The No Child Left Behind Act requires that schools nationwide prepare transition plans to help students move from early childhood education into elementary school. Ask your school district for information about:

1.      Helping your child transition into kindergarten;
2.      What developmental stages are typical of pre-k and kindergarten-aged children; and
3.     What to expect in terms of learning standards, behavioral expectations, and attendance requirements for kindergarteners. 

Summer School

Did you know that some public schools offer pre-kindergarten summer school for children? If you’d like your child to have a head start on adjusting to the kindergarten environment and learning experience, check with your local district to find out if summer school is an option for your son or daughter.

Immunizations

When preparing your child for kindergarten, it’s important to understand Missouri’s School Immunization Requirements. It’s never too early to begin exploring Missouri’s immunization requirements, especially since some of them must be met on or after your son or daughter’s fourth birthday. 

If your family has religious or medical reasons for not giving your child certain immunizations, the State of Missouri allow exceptions. For details, please contact the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services or your local school district.

Records & Documentation

It will be helpful, if not necessary, to have your child’s birth certificate, vaccination and immunization records, and your family’s proof of residence in your district (a utility bill, for example, or a driver’s license that lists your current home address) with you when you enroll your child for kindergarten. For a complete list of required documentation for kindergarten enrollment, please contact your local school district.

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The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services’ School Immunization Requirements


3550 Amazonas Drive, Jefferson City, MO 65109. 573-638-4825

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