Did you know that 50 per cent of children who attend kindergarten are not ready for kindergarten?
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A recent article published in the Daily Telegraph found that the number of immature children being enrolled in school before they are ready so their financially strapped parents can save thousands in pre-school and childcare fees is on the increase.
As a psychologist with over a decade of experience working with children and their parents, I cannot agree more with the article and in the last few years have seen an increase in number of parents that come and seek help/advice when their child is in the middle of their Primary education, or even early High School. Many of these parents in hindsight, report that they wish that they had received a second opinion before making a decision regarding their child’s School Readiness.
By that stage, their child has already experienced some difficulties with their learning or making friends or self-esteem, or general motivation or just not enjoying school.
Our state and federal government has recently invested $16.8 million into a study conducted by the Queensland University of Technology and the University of Melbourne. The E4Kids study followed 2500 children for five years to determine how the quality of their early education affects their future learning, development and wellbeing.
What they found was that
On a scale of one to seven, the quality of instruction for four-year olds – regardless of whether they attend preschool, a childcare centre or family day care – averages a ranking of just two. E4Kids researchers observed participating children for up to five hours, twice a year. Services were assessed on their emotional support, classroom organisation and instructional support. Across the three categories, “services” average a score of 3.92 out of seven
It is only since January 1 2014 that the new Federal Government national quality standards have lifted the minimum standard of qualifications for staff, education benchmarks and better staff-to-child ratio.
So how accurate is your child performance at preschool as an indication of their school readiness? Should you really rely on your child’s teacher’s feedback as the sole source of information?
Get a second opinion from a child psychologist and give your child the right start to learning.