Mandatory kindergarten, Mississippi? - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

Mandatory kindergarten in Mississippi?

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JACKSON, Ms., (KNOE 8 News) - At least three Mississippi senators have introduced bills that would require 5-year-olds to attend school. Also, at least one House member indicated an interest in filing a similar bill on the house side of the legislature..

The Education Commission of the States says Mississippi would become the 15th state to make kindergarten attendance mandatory. Current state law says public schools must offer kindergarten, but attendance isn't required.

Most Mississippi 5-year-olds are already in kindergarten.

Last year, more than 41,000 students were enrolled in public kindergartens. That includes some held back to repeat the grade, but doesn't include the roughly 10 percent of Mississippi children in private schools.

The Census Bureau in 2010 found there were only about 42,000 students in the age group who would've been in kindergarten last year.

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