State Senator Cleo Fields wants to ‘make Kindergarten attendance mandatory’ in the state


Pre-kindergarten students listen as their teacher reads a story at Dawes Elementary in Chicago, Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. Chicago Public Schools students began their return to the classroom Monday as school doors opened to thousands of pre-kindergarten and some special education students after going remote last March due to the coronavirus pandemic. (Ashlee Rezin Garcia/Chicago Sun-Times via AP, Pool)

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – Did you know that school systems in Louisiana are required to offer Kindergarten but it is not required that students attend classes?

According to the Louisiana Department of Education, “students who enroll in first grade who have not taken Kindergarten have the option to take a screener.”

That is the law in Louisiana.

Senate Education Committee Chairman Cleo Fields is looking to change that with some new pre-filed legislation.

That legislation is Senate Bill 10.

According to Fields, Senate Bill 10 would “make kindergarten attendance mandatory. “

If this bill is passed, “children who turn five years of age on or before September 30th will be required to be enrolled in kindergarten.”

The 2021 Regular Legislative Session starts on April 12 and Senate Bill 10 is on the agenda.

“As Louisiana continues to focus on the improvement of, and access to, early childhood education, there has never been a time of more importance to address the issue of kindergarten enrollment,” stated Fields. “In fact, we can’t firmly address the issue of early childhood education if we’re not actively taking steps to ensure there is no gap between a Pre-K and kindergarten education.”

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