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540 - Early Admission to Kindergarten


Adopted:  December 18, 2017    
Revised:  March 20, 2023 




The purpose of this policy is to explain the requirements for Early Entrance to School requests for students at Owatonna Public Schools.


Minn. Stat. § 120A.20 (1)(b) Admission to public school states that, “A person shall not be admitted to a public school (1) as a kindergarten pupil, unless the pupil is at least five years of age September 1 of the calendar year in which the school year for which the pupil seeks admission commences…except that any school board may establish a policy for admission of selected pupils at an earlier age….”


A.    Must be five on or before December 1 and have one year of preschool experience.

B.    An application for early entrance to kindergarten must be made no later than May 1 of the preceding school year to the Elementary Principal along with a copy of the child’s birth certificate and a letter of recommendation from the child’s preschool teacher.

C.    The following tests will be administered by a certified teacher, school psychologist, or principal employed by Owatonna Public Schools and the scores must be at or above the levels indicated:

Test Score
Curriculum based reading assessment Kindergarten - Winter Goal
A Test of Visual Motor Integration +1 Standard Deviation Above
Receptive/Expressive Vocabulary Test +1 Standard Deviation


D.    The child’s intellectual functioning will be assessed using an individually administered intelligence test conducted by a licensed psychologist, preferably employed by Owatonna Public Schools.  The child’s Full Scale Intellectual functioning must place him/her at or above the 85th percentile or greater than +1 Standard Deviation.   The parent/guardian will incur the charge for the assessment and it will be $50 per hour if completed by the school district.  A sliding fee scale will be used to accommodate financial need.

E.    The district will complete testing and will meet the parents/guardians upon completion of the evaluation to review the results and make recommendations based on the evaluation results by June 1st.  All district decisions are final.

F.    All early entrant placements are on a trial basis for six weeks. The student’s progress will be reviewed at a parent-teacher conference where the decision will be made as to whether or not the student will be continuing beyond the trial period.  All district decisions are final.

G.    Children who are approved for continuation in kindergarten will automatically be approved for early admission to first grade pending successful completion of the kindergarten requirements.  If the student has not met promotion to first grade requirements, retention in kindergarten will be considered.

Legal References:    
Minn. Stat. § 120A.20 (Admission to Public School)
Minn. Stat. § 124D.02 (School Board Powers; Enrollment)

Cross References:    
Policy 513 (Student Promotion, Retention, and Program Design)