Florida Statute 1003.21 lists the educational requirements for students attending public and private schools within the state, including the requirements for advancement to the next grade level from kindergarten through high school. In order to be passed on to the next grade, students must meet all requirements prior to the end of the school year and show proficiency in all required subjects.
Florida has set a minimum age requirement for each level of school at both private and public schools. In order to be accepted into first grade, a student must be six years old on or before September 1 of that school year. If the student does not meet that age requirement, she will be registered for kindergarten unless the school board approves her admission to first grade based on exceptional circumstances.
Regardless of whether a student attends a public or private school, he must have successfully completed kindergarten. Students who are home schooled must meet the public school proficiency level for registration for first grade. Placement is determined by using the Kindergarten-Literacy Survey and the Kindergarten Inventory of Math. Results from these two tests show if the student is at first grade level in reading and math. If the student does not pass these tests, he will be placed in kindergarten.
All students must meet the reading proficiency standards for their levels of education as set forth by the Florida school board and state statutes. If the child is behind in reading, his parents will be notified and a plan will be formulated to help improve his reading score. If his test score is not up to standard, he may still be given permission to be placed in first grade, but there will be a progress monitoring plan set up to help ensure he catches up.
If a student is transferring in from another school within the state of Florida, she must meet Florida age requirements and have documentation from the school district she is transferring from verifying her completion of kindergarten. If the student is transferring from out of state, she must fulfill all Florida requirements to attend a Florida elementary school. Items required of an out-of-state transfer include proof of legal Florida residency, an official letter or transcript from the child's previous school, an immunization report, a report from a medical exam taken within the prior 12 months and a birth certificate. The student must also meet Florida age requirements for admission to the first grade. If the state the student is transferring from has a different age requirement, the student may still be admitted so long as the age requirements of the other state are met.
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