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Turner, McKnight Bill Would Lower the Age Requirement of Compulsory School Attendance from 6 to 5 Years Old

Trenton – Today, the Senate Education Committee advanced legislation sponsored by Senator Shirley K. Turner and Senator Angela V. McKnight that lowers the age requirement for compulsory school attendance from 6 to 5 years old.

“Getting children into the classroom earlier can improve academic performance,” said Senator Turner (D-Mercer/Hunterdon). “As we continue to expand the availability of universal, full-day preschool, lowering the age requirement for children to be in school from six to five years old will help to close gaps in New Jersey’s early education system.”

“Providing a high-quality early education sets children up for greater scholastic achievement throughout their studies,” said Senator McKnight (D-Hudson). “Increasing the number of years spent in the classroom also offers more opportunities to address achievement gaps early on, especially for disadvantaged students.”

The bill, S-2970, would take effect immediately and apply to the second full school year beginning after the date of enactment.

The legislation advanced out of committee in a 3-2 vote.