Date of Award


Degree Name

School Psychology


Graduate School of Education and Professional Development

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Lanai Jennings

Second Advisor

Linda Winter

Third Advisor

Melissa Atkins


Kindergarten age eligibility requirements vary from state to state; however, school districts typically admit children into kindergarten in the fall following a student’s fifth birthday. Research on the outcomes of five-year-old children and children whose entry was delayed until age six is contradictory. The current study was conducted to add to the existing literature to assist families and policy makers with decision making regarding appropriate kindergarten entry age. The sample included 541 second through seventh grade students from a small rural school district. Actual and predicted counts of students who were later found eligible for specific learning disabilities were examined among children with delayed entry as compared to children who entered kindergarten as five-year-olds. A Fisher’s Exact test revealed no significant difference in the values any more than would be expected due to chance. Further studies should focus on increasing the sample size by adding other larger Ohio school districts, conducting longitudinal studies that follow a cohort of first grade students throughout public education, or by researching districts with higher socio-economic statuses.


Learning disabilities -- Research.

School psychology.