Calif. Senate votes to delay kindergarten entry

09.01.2010 | Associated Press

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. — California would delay kindergarten for thousands of youngsters under a bill approved by the state Senate.

The bill passed 21-15 Tuesday and now heads to the governor. It would require children to have turned 5 by Sept. 1 to begin kindergarten in that school year. The current cutoff date is Dec. 2.

California, Connecticut, Michigan and Vermont are the only states that have a cutoff date later than Dec. 1.

The state Department of Education says about 100,000 of the state’s 430,000 children start kindergarten before their 5th birthday.

The bill by Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, could save the state an estimated $700 million per year by cutting enrollment.

SB1381 would be phased in over three years starting in the 2012-13 school year.

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