Early Entry - Kindergarten or First Grade


Early Entrance for Kindergarten or First Grade

Entrance for First Grade without attending Kindergarten

The School Board has established guidelines for enrollment that are consistent with Indiana law, sound educational practice, and ensure equitable treatment and proper placement. 

Indiana statute, I.C. 20-33-2-7 establishes a statewide entrance date for public school kindergarten.  Based on state law, a student residing in Indiana must be at least five (5) years of age on or before August 1 in order to enroll in public school kindergarten and six (6) years of age on or before August 1  to enroll in first grade. 

In accordance with the South Madison School Board’s Entrance Requirement policy (5112), each child of legal settlement shall be eligible for

  • Kindergarten providing that s/he has attained the age of five (5) on or before August 1.  
  • First-grade students must be six (6) on or before August 1.
  • This requirement shall apply to children who transfer into the School Corporation and who may have attended private or public kindergarten in another locality.
  • Additionally, an incoming first-grade student who has not attended a kindergarten program shall be screened to determine the best placement for that child. 

South Madison believes that as a general rule, it is beneficial for students to meet the state requirement to enter kindergarten or first grade.  However, it is recognized that there are some children who are advanced -- socially, emotionally, and academically -- who would benefit from early entrance.  Based on board policy, South Madison will consider appeals to this rule.  

An appeal may be requested by the parent/guardian for a student who does not meet the state enrollment age for consideration based on the following guidelines:

  • The child must be of legal settlement within the South Madison Community School Corporation to be enrolled in kindergarten.
  • The child’s birthday falls after August 1 or in September.  No child whose birthday is later than September 30 will be considered for an appeal.
  • The child’s screening results meet minimum expectations on screening.
  • Space is available in the requested school in kindergarten/1st-grade classes.

To appeal is to be submit the AEK form listed below no later than two (2) weeks prior to the start of the school year. Again, applications for early enrollment will only be considered for children with August or September birthdays.  

Following submission of the appeal, the child will participate in a screening program.  Parents will be contacted to schedule an appointment for screening.  Parents will be asked to bring their child to a testing location.  The screening process will take approximately 1 hour.  Once the screening is finished and scored, the decision whether or not to approve the appeal and enroll the child in the kindergarten (or first grade) program will be made. You will be notified by mail within two weeks of your child’s screening date. 
South Madison believes that as a general rule, it is beneficial for students to complete a kindergarten program prior to first grade.  However, based on board policy, South Madison will consider appeals to this rule.  


Click Here for Early Entrance or First Grade without Kindergarten Request Form

Click Here for Information about the Screening Process

As of the spring of 2020, Early Entrance to Kindergarten applicants no longer need to attend Kindergarten Round-Up or Blast-Off.  Please DO NOT attempt to register your child until you receive notification the waiver has been approved.

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