The Princess turns 6 early in January - in South Africa's school system children go to grade one in the year that they turn 7 as our school year runs with the calender year. But children like her, that are on the edge of that barrier has the option to start school early (or late in the other direction). At her present school she has surged ahead and will be graduating in a few days from grade 0 - practically a year ahead of schedule. She has also been declared school ready and can do basic sums and spell, all in English, not her mother tongue. She can therefore go to grade 1 next year.
We as parents have however decided to hold her back and let her start school in the intended year. That will mean that she will be doing grade 0 again. The difference is that it will be in Afrikaans and not in English, and at the pre-school of the primary school that she will be attending. Her current teacher agrees that although academically she is school ready, she can do with a bit of emotional growth and is in agreement with our choice.Possibly the opinion of our pediatrician is what enforced it in our minds - they may be fine starting early, but as teenagers that one year earlier impacts heavily on an already stressful period of life.
On Saturday we went to the orientation day of her new school, the teacher spent an hour with the kids in the class without the parents and after that we had a chance each to talk to her. I was delighted that she is more than pleased to have a kid in her class that could be a bit ahead of the pack and she has out of her own accord promised to stimulate her when needed. She will also go ahead with teaching her to spell in Afrikaans. Possibly we can move to reading at home as the school is not allowed to do that officially.
So our Princess is going to play for another year - the stress of school uniforms and homework will wait a while and mom has another year to breathe a bit easier.
Resting assured that we made the right decision, the best one for our child, makes my Monday.
Playing along with Cheryl.