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· Volume V Issue IV


This study endeavored to describe the experiences and challenges of the parents in kindergarten school readiness of Valentin N. Daquio Elementary School Panabo North District, Davao del Norte. The participants of this study were eight (8) kindergarten teachers employing the qualitative design utilizing the phenomenological approach. The findings revealed that kindergarten parents encountered physical, socio-emotional, language, and communication readiness challenges. Preparing a child for kindergarten is a rollercoaster of emotions for parents. Excitement, anxiety, and pride often coexist as parents grapple with the reality that their child is growing up. The anticipation of a new chapter in their child's life can be overwhelming. While the journey can be emotionally taxing, it is also an opportunity for growth and development for both parents and children. Effective processing of the acceptance of kindergarten pupils can significantly ease this noteworthy life transition, ensuring that children who step into kindergarten are ready to learn and explore. Likewise, providing unwavering support is equally important, which can help their children embark on their kindergarten journey with confidence and enthusiasm. Through school readiness, cultivating children's skills to become engaged in school activities sets for a successful educational experience. Remember that every child is unique, and readiness varies from one child to another. It's essential to be patient and flexible, adapting your approach to your child's individual needs and pace. The findings of the study can be utilized to better inform parents about the skills that are crucial for readiness, help teachers in designing better instructional experiences, and aid legislators in planning and implementing policies that could improve the quality of early childhood education in the country.

Keywords: Kindergarten school readiness, parents’ perspective



Kindergarten education is crucial for a child's development. Traditionally, it used to mean brightly colored paintings, music, clay, block building, bursting curiosity, and intensive exploration, but today's trend leans toward a more structured academic curriculum. However, because of stricter accountability and standards, increased pressure applied in elementary schools, and the demands of globalization, Kindergarten became a critical and mandatory entry stage to primary education. Hence, a five-year-old child prepared for grade school. A Help or a Hurt?

Over the last century, in the U.S., the age at which children initiate their formal schooling has slowly increased. Historically, children attended Kindergarten at five years old and first grade at six years old. However, roughly twenty (20) percent of kindergarten learners are now six years old. The lengthening of the Kindergarten age changes in state laws that moved forward the cut-off birth date at which five (5) years old were eligible to enter Kindergarten (Deming & Dynarski, 2018). However, most parents increase starting ages due to academic redshirting, an increasingly common decision to seek the delaying and developmental advantages for their child's school entry to allow extra time for socio-emotional, intellectual, or physical growth (Bassok & Reardon, 2013).

In New Jersey, the state does not have a mandated entrance age to Kindergarten. Each local school district establishes an entrance age varying from community to section within the state (New Jersey Department of Education) (Kauerz, 2015). These local schools are managed and staffed by the local rather than the county, having variations in educational policies and practices within the state. However, the criterion for school entrance is obtaining the age of five years during the cut-off date. In the central part of New Jersey, there are five different cut-off dates for twelve school districts. Identifying the appropriate age for children to enter school is complicated because children do not all develop simultaneously (Blake & Finch, 2012).

Regardless of age, a substantial variation in school readiness started. For many years, the U.K. expecting children to start school early has been out of step. Though parents were happy with the early school age, more so raising children about the appropriateness of a school environment for young children. Teaching the 3Rs results in long-term advantages; however, there is a danger that young children would miss out on the other essential experiences damaged by an early start (Kıldan, 2012).

Increasingly, problems seen in schooling, such as high repetition, early dropout rates, and poor learning, as well as poor health of children, are being traced to malnutrition, poor health, and abuse very early in the lives of children. Deped Secretary Briones argued that designing the kindergarten curriculum to respond to the holistic developmental needs of five-year-old learners such as socio-emotional values, physical health, creativity, mathematics, understanding of the material and natural environment, language, literacy, and communication development. Moreover, Briones states that the first quarter of the curriculum is structured to strengthen the learner's preparation to meet the kindergarten learning standards (Deped Order No. 20 s. 2018.

The need to define kindergarten school readiness is gaining attention and interest from the educational community. Times have changed; consequently, kindergarten readiness expectations have transformed and evolved more academically than a generation ago (Hustedt et al., 2017). According to (Harmon & Viruru, 2018), parents' views of readiness are multilayered, reasonably complex, and challenging as parents consider mental, physical, emotional, and social development skills. This study in early childhood education supports that early childhood life is a time of rapid growth and development (Ramey & Ramey, 2009). Despite the increased interest and attention on school readiness, many different viewpoints on what is ready for kindergarten.

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