Could we keep our daughter out of Pre-Primary one day a week next year?

So at dinner the other night, my husband Adam suddenly raised this issue which sort of knocked me around a little bit. But not in a bad way.

He said, “Next year, when (Miss 4) goes to Pre-Primary, I don’t want her to have to go to school 5 days a week. There’s no need for a child that age to have to be at school so many days a week.” That sentence, while initially shocked me, got me thinking. Does a 5 year old really need to be at school 5 days a week?

At the moment, Kindergarten runs 5 days a fortnight. 2 days one week, then 3 days the next week. I know that the weeks that she goes to kindy 3 days, she comes home absolutely exhausted on the last day.

Next year, she would have to do 5 full days a week. Many adults go to work the same number of days and same number of hours. Does she really need to be there every day? If she went 4 days a week next year, would she be missing out on much? I mean, it’s only kindergarten.

My first reaction was hell, I’d love to have a break from her everyday. Then I realised, do I really want that break? I work 3 nights a week, which requires me to leave home as soon as she finishes school. So that means next year I only get to spend quality time with her 4 nights a week. Out of that time, I still need to spend quality time with my other three children. 2  (my teenagers) of which spends a week with me and the other week with their dad. And of course, there’s the cooking, cleaning and other chores on top of that.

What exactly will she be missing out if she misses one day of pre-primary each week? I know they teach literacy and numeracy, social skills and motor skills like painting etc. Would she be missing out on much or will she still be able to learn all of those things at home in her daily life? I do most things with her except anything to do with glitter, paint or play dough. 

According to Vittra, “In Sweden, attendance at school is compulsory for all children aged 7-16. The age when children may start school is flexible: a child can start school as a 6, 7 or 8-year-old. Compulsory school is free of charge.”, unlike school here in Australia, where it is compulsory at Pre-Primary (and voluntary charges).

Adam’s point of view comes from a place where he thinks children that age shouldn’t have to be away from home so many days a week. “It’s too much for a little child.”

I agree with him 100%. And I think we will have to head to the principal’s office to have a chat with her to discuss what the ramifications of our daughter if she misses school once a week. We will speak to her at the end of the year. I will keep you all posted with this.

What do you think? Do you think we should keep Miss 4 out of school once a week next year at Pre-primary to spend time with the family? Or do you think it’s important for her to conform with the rest of society?

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