This article on EdSource about kindergarten truancy contains this paragraph: The sentence in bold made me wonder this: What about dialing back the “heft” of the kindergarten curriculum? Would that preserve childhood a little longer while at the same time not leaving anyone behind? As in, kids wouldn’t be behind if they weren’t starting so early.

Kindergarten was once considered by some to be a relatively insignificant grade level – it is still not mandatory in California until age 6. But as the heft of kindergarten curricular offerings has increased, so have the ramifications of missing formative instruction. Research has linked chronic absenteeism in kindergarten – defined as missing 10 percent or more of school days – to lower achievement in future grades in math and reading, an increase in problem behavior and difficulty in obtaining a score of “proficient” on California’s 3rd-grade reading test. In turn, students who struggle with reading in 3rd grade are less likely to graduate from high school on time.