SIOUX FALLS - The start of the 2013-2014 school year is still six months away, but if you have a little one at home now is the time to decide if he is ready to be enrolled in kindergarten.

It used to be an easy decision, if your child turned five you sent them to school. That’s not always the case now.

One way to help you determine if your child is ready for school is an informational event for families called  "Here Comes Kindergarten! " This program gives parents information about the kindergarten curriculum and kindergarten readiness.

"Here Comes Kindergarten! is good for parents to learn the kindergarten expectations. They'll have to carry their lunch tray, be able to open their milk," said DeeAnn Konrad, Community Relations Supervisor for Sioux Falls Public Schools.

Jeannie Johnson, mother of six, is sending her youngest child to kindergarten in the fall. She says each child is different and parents need to evaluate each child before making the decision to send them to school.

"Looking at your kids’ level of confidence is huge when making that decision."

While some children are ready at age five others are ready at six. Another thing to keep in mind is South Dakota does not require a child to attend kindergarten but state law mandates the child must be enrolled in school by age seven.

Johnson said, "If you’re really struggling with the decision of whether or not to send them, hold them back. You’ll always come back to the fact, should I have sent her?"

The Here Comes Kindergarten! event is scheduled at Hayward Elementary, 400 N. Valley View Road on Thursday, February 28, 2013 at 6:00 pm.  Informational booths with information on Sioux Falls School District specialized schools, enrollment information, after school care, and child nutrition will be available throughout the evening.  Childcare will be provided at no cost.  Please call 367-8488 to reserve childcare for the event. For more information on

Konrad reminds parents that  "Here Comes Kindergarten! "is not a screening to see if your child is ready for school. If parents want to have their child screened for kindergarten readiness that is done through the early childhood screening and evaluation program. This is a free service but you need to make an appointment by calling 367-8488. For more information go to the School Falls School District Website.

"Parents know their child best. Keep in mind kids are reading by the end of kindergarten, not without errors but they are learning to read," said Konrad.

If you plan to send your child to school but aren’t sure which school they should go to edulog's WebQuery and type in your address.

Konrad says 900 students are enrolled in Sioux Falls Public Schools from outside of the school district and 3,000 students from within the school district go to schools outside of their assigned attendance area.  She says most parents open enroll their students to different schools because the family daycare is close by.

Sioux Falls Catholic schools are registering students right now for fall classes, pre-k through high school. For children who are five years old, but not quite ready for kindergarten, the Sioux Falls Catholic School offers Jumpstart and  St. Mary’s elementary also offers half-day, every day kindergarten classes for parents who believe all day classes are too long for kindergarten students. For more information catholic schools see

Both school districts require students to have up-to-date immunization records, a complete physical and a copy of a state certified birth certificate to enroll.

South Dakota law requires that students must be age 5 by September 1st to enter Kindergarten.