Early Entrance

Early Entrance Process to Kindergarten or First Grade

The Illinois legislature passed the Illinois Accelerated Placement Act, Public Act 100-0421, effective July 1, 2018. This act allows Illinois public school districts to provide grade acceleration, including early entrance to Kindergarten and First Grade, for students who demonstrate high ability and who may benefit from accelerated placement, but do not meet the District’s age requirements for enrollment (typically, a child must turn five years old on or before September 1 to enroll in Kindergarten, or a child must turn six years old on or before September 1 to enroll in First Grade).

Parents/guardians must apply to have their child considered for early entrance into Kindergarten or First Grade. Applications are accepted between March 1st and May 1st of each school year, for the following school year. Applications submitted prior to March 1st will not be accepted. Applications submitted after May 1st may be considered. Please note: A late application could delay your child’s entrance date if eligible.

District 72 Kindergarten and First Grade Early Entrance Process 

Parents/guardians or other individuals who know the child and are knowledgeable about the child’s abilities may refer the child to be considered for early entrance into Kindergarten or First Grade. 

You may view a flow-chart version of our process here: Flow Chart


To apply for early entrance to Kindergarten or First Grade, the parent/guardian must complete and return an Fairview Parent Input and Grade Acceleration/Early Entrance Application and a Release of Information form to Fairview South School. 


All student assessments will be completed in person at Fairview School District 72. After submitting an application for early entrance to Kindergarten or First Grade, the Fairview South School team will contact the parent/guardian to schedule a day and time for your child to complete a Curriculum Based Measurement (CBM) screening in both reading and math.

If your child performs above the 90th percentile as compared to the end of year norms for the grade that is being considered for early entrance on both of these measures, then a second day and time will be scheduled for a series of further assessments that will measure your child’s reading and math abilities. If your child performs at or above the 99th percentile on the further measures of reading and math, your child will be scheduled for further assessments in the area of written expression. If your child performs at or above the 99th percentile on the assessments of written expression, further screenings in the areas of social emotional functioning and motor skills will be completed. 

If a language other than English is spoken in the home, the early entrance process will be completed in close consultation with the District’s English Learning Department

The screeners and assessments used to determine a child’s eligibility for early entrance include academic screeners, and then, if appropriate, further Curriculum Based Measurements (CBMs), written assessments, a social/emotional functioning screening, and a motor skills screening.

The District reserves the right to modify the assessment procedure as deemed necessary by the Fairview South School team.

If your child attends preschool or kindergarten, a staff member from Fairview South School will contact your child’s current teacher and will ask the teacher to complete a questionnaire about your child. A Release of Information form (linked above) must be completed for school staff to contact your child’s current teacher.

In addition, if your child attends preschool or kindergarten, your child may be observed by a District staff member. This staff member may also interview your child’s teacher and interact with your child to gain information about your child’s independence, fine motor skills, and social/emotional development.


The Fairview South School Principal will contact the child’s parent/guardian to discuss the child’s assessment results and early entrance eligibility. Eligibility is determined by the Fairview South School team, with consideration of parent input.

Children not scoring at the levels specified in the Early Entrance Criteria section (above) are not eligible for early entrance.

Parents/guardians will receive a written notice with the final early entrance decision. The Fairview South School team will develop a written plan for eligible students.


Parents/Guardians may appeal an early entrance decision by completing an appeal form and returning that form to the Director of Student Services, 7040 Laramie Ave, Skokie, IL 60077. Appeals must be made no later than 14 days after the early entrance decision date. Appeals received after June 15th may not be reviewed prior to the start of the upcoming school year.


Q. Who do I contact about having my child assessed for Early Entrance to Kindergarten or First Grade?

A. Complete the early entrance application form which is available on our school website. If you have any questions about the early entrance criteria or assessments, please contact the Fairview South School Principal.

Q. How can I prepare my child for the assessments?

A. Make sure your child is rested and has eaten. The assessments represent key academic knowledge that the District expects high-performing Kindergarten or First Grade students to demonstrate. It is recommended that parents/guardians communicate the following with the child: show what he/she has learned in school, do your best, and enjoy yourself. Ensure the child understands that parents/guardians will wait in the school office while the child completes the assessments in a separate location.

Q. Why are the criteria for early entrance so high?

A. Early entrance to a grade (i.e., “grade skipping”) is one of several options that can be used to support a child with highly advanced skills. The criteria used ensures that the child will be successful in a curriculum typically reserved for older students.

Q. If my child completed/is completing private kindergarten early, will he/she automatically be eligible for early entrance into first grade the following year?

A. No. To be eligible for early entrance to first grade, children who are not six by September 1 must meet the early entrance requirements.

Q. When will the assessment process take place?

A. A school staff member will contact the parent/guardian to schedule a specific date, time, and location for the assessments.

Q. How will I be informed about my child’s results?

A. The District will contact the parents/guardians by email or phone of assessment results throughout the process, and to schedule subsequent assessments if eligible. The District will send written notice by email or U.S. mail of the final early entrance decision.

Q. Who makes the decision about whether my child is eligible for Early Entrance?

A. A Fairview South School team will review the assessment results for your child, in addition to the parent input form, and base the decision using the criteria specified on the flow chart. 

Q. What if I do not agree with the test results or the team’s decision for my child?

A. Parents/guardians that disagree with an early entrance decision may submit an appeal. Appeals must be made within 14 days of the early entrance decision and are reviewed by the Director of Student Services, at which time the decision will be final. Appeals received after June 15th may not be reviewed until after the start of the upcoming school year.

Q. My student is very high achieving but just missed qualifying based on the criteria. How will he/she be challenged and supported?

A. There are many students in the District that perform at very high levels who receive daily acceleration and other support regardless of grade level assignment. Please contact your child’s teacher directly to discuss how they can be challenged and supported.