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Table 5.3. Types of state and district requirements for kindergarten entrance and attendance, by state: 2014
 
State Compulsory
school age
1 Kindergarten
entrance age
  State requires
district to offer
full-day
kindergarten
program
  State requires
district to offer
half-day
kindergarten
program
  State requires
kindergarten
attendance
 
United States2   †  12   34   16  
                   
Alabama 6   5 on or before 9/01 Yes   No   No  
Alaska 7   5 on or before 9/01 No   No   No  
Arizona 6   5 before 9/01 No   Yes   No  
Arkansas 5   5 on or before 8/01 Yes   No   Yes  
California 6   5 on or before 9/01 No   Yes   No  
                   
Colorado 6 on or before 8/01   5 on or before 10/1 No   Yes   No  
Connecticut 5   5 on or before 1/01 3 No   Yes   Yes  
Delaware 5   5 on or before 8/31 Yes   No   Yes  
District of Columbia 5   5 on or before 9/30 Yes   No   Yes  
Florida 6   5 on or before 9/01 No   Yes   No  
                   
Georgia 6   5 by 9/01 No   Yes   No  
Hawaii 6 by 1/01   5 on or before 7/31 No   Yes   No  
Idaho 7 by first day of school   5 on or before 9/01 No   No   No  
Illinois 6 on or before 9/01   5 on or before 9/01 No   Yes   No  
Indiana 7   5 on 8/01 No   Yes   No  
                   
Iowa 6 by 9/15 4 5 on or before 9/15 No   Yes   No  
Kansas 7   5 on or before 8/31 No   Yes   No  
Kentucky 6 by 10/01 5 5 by 10/01 No   Yes   No  
Louisiana 7   5 on or before 9/30 Yes   No   Yes  
Maine 7   5 on or before 10/15 No   Yes   No  
                   
Maryland 5   5 on or before 9/01 Yes   No   Yes  
Massachusetts 6   Local education agency (LEA) option No   Yes   No  
Michigan 6 by 12/01   5 by 10/01 6 No   Yes   No  
Minnesota 7   5 on or before 9/01 7 No   Yes   No  
Mississippi 6 by 9/01   5 on or before 9/01 Yes   No   No  
                   
Missouri 7   5 before 8/01 No   Yes   No  
Montana 7   5 on or before 9/10 No   Yes   No  
Nebraska 6 by 1/01   5 on or before 7/31 No   Yes   No  
Nevada 7   5 on or before 9/30 No   Yes 8 Yes  
New Hampshire 6   LEA option No   Yes   No  
                   
New Jersey 6   LEA option 9 No 10 No   No 11
New Mexico 5 by 9/01   5 before 9/01 No   Yes   Yes  
New York 6   LEA option 12 No   No   No
North Carolina 7   5 on or before 8/31 Yes   No   No 13
North Dakota 7   5 before 8/01 No   Yes   No  
                   
Ohio 6   LEA option 14 No   Yes   Yes  
Oklahoma 5   5 on or before 9/01 Yes   No   Yes  
Oregon 7 15 5 on or before 9/01 No   Yes   No  
Pennsylvania 8   LEA option 16 No   No   No  
Rhode Island 6   5 on or before 9/01 No   Yes   Yes  
                   
South Carolina 5   5 on or before 9/01 Yes   No   Yes  
South Dakota 6   5 on or before 9/01 No   Yes   Yes 16
Tennessee 6   5 on or before 8/15 Yes   No   Yes  
Texas 6   5 on or before 9/01 No   Yes   No  
Utah 6   5 before 9/02 No   Yes   No  
                   
Vermont 6   LEA option 18 No   Yes   No  
Virginia 5   5 on or before 9/30 No   Yes   Yes  
Washington 8   5 by 8/31 No 18 Yes   No  
West Virginia 6   5 by 9/01 Yes   No   Yes  
Wisconsin 6   5 on or before 9/01 20 No   Yes   No  
Wyoming 7   5 on or before 9/15   No   Yes 19 No  
† Not applicable.
1 Specific date at which compulsory age is reached is included only if specified in statute.
2 The total reflects the number of "Yes" responses in the column.
3 In Connecticut, children must be 5 years of age on or before January 1 of the current school year.
4 In Iowa, children enrolled in preschool programs (4 years of age on or before September 15) are considered to be of compulsory school attendance age.
5 By August 1, 2017, Kentucky's compulsory school age will change to 6 years of age and kindergarten entrance date will change to 5 years of age.
6 Michigan's kindergarten entrance date will change to 5 years of age by September 1 in 2015–16.
7 School boards may adopt an early admissions policy.
8 In certain school districts, the lowest performing schools with the highest numbers of limited-English-proficient students will start offering full-day kindergarten and free prekindergarten programs.
9 New Jersey schools may admit children aged 4–5, and they must admit children aged 5–6. The cut-off date must be after October 1.
10 The Abbott district is required to offer full-day kindergarten.
11 Children are required to attend full-day kindergarten in the Abbott district.
12 New York students must be between the ages of 4–6.
13 The initial point of entry into the school is kindergarten, but a principal may override this for an exceptionally mature student and place the child in first grade.
14 Districts in Ohio may choose to set the cut-off date for August 1 or September 30, or by the beginning of a school term (if it starts after September 30).
15 The compulsory school age in Oregon is 5-6, if the child has been enrolled in public school.
16 Students in Pennsylvania may not be younger than 4 for Kindergarten-4 (K-4) and not younger than 5 for Kindergarten-5 (K-5).
17 All children in South Dakota must attend kindergarten before age 7.
18 Local education agencies in Vermont may choose to set the kindergarten entrance date between August 31 and January 1.
19 In Washington, full-day kindergarten was phased in beginning in the 2012–13 school year, starting with the highest-poverty schools. Statewide implementation will be achieved by 2017–18.
20 Wisconsin kindergarten entrance age is 5 on or before September 1, or age 4 on or before September 1 for 4-year-old kindergarten.
21 Wyoming statute requires one full-day program per district. SOURCE: Education Commission of the States, Kindergarten Online Database: State Kindergarten Policies, retrieved January 8, 2015 from http://www.ecs.org/html/educationissues/kindergarten/kdb_intro_sf.asp. Data Source.