If you're new to this series you may want to go here, here and here first. Welcome!
Make no mistake- we live in an upper-middle class neighborhood. Many of these kids would be considered privileged by most standards, yet there are very few parents who volunteer the time in the class on a regular basis. What I have found is that even when a parent is a regular in the classroom it does not guarantee the younger child's success.
As a case in point one boy in the class has been a problem all year long. He regularly disrupts the class by talking out of turn, interrupting the teacher, squirming and touching other children when it is 'listening time.' About 6 weeks ago the teacher began having her retention meetings with the parents of the children that she thought should stay back, (these conversations start with the first report card in November.) Because I also help with 1 on 1 testing I know that this child is behind in standards as well- things that other kids have tested and passed in January, he is still having trouble with, and in some areas not.even.close.
For a few weeks this boy's mother was in the class- not to help the teacher, but to get her son 'caught up' to move on to first grade. This child would not even behave with his mother in the room. This child does not: have ADD/ADHD, have a learning disability, does not have a 504 plan for special circumstances. He is merely a boy who started K at 4 who really needed another year to grow up to be ready for what the state and federal government think that kids should be ready for at 4. It is absurd.
This may all seem contrary to my point, however, those children that have no parental support in the classroom also seem to have no support with homework completion and seem to not be read to. Many of these parents are scratching their heads wondering why their teacher is recommending the child stay in K next year. Unfortunately, many are sending them to 1st grade anyway. If they were kept in K the children would have a chance to catch up, academically and socially, and be ready for the jump to full day school, the faster pace, and the added homework level. Parental support, in and out of the classroom, is key in a child's success, especially if the child starts kindergarten on the young side.
Girls, (and a few guys,) I am off to Vegas!! Wish me luck- I'd like to come home with some winnings this year!! I'm also hoping that the bowling gods are smiling on me, too.