State Kindergarten-Through-Third-Grade Policies: State Profile

State Kindergarten-Through-Third-Grade Policies: State Profile - Maryland

June 2018

This information was collected from state statutes, rules and regulations. A profile was sent to each state for review and modification, as needed.

Kindergarten Requirements
What is the compulsory school age? Age 5 Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-301
What is the state's kindergarten entrance age? Age 5 by September 1 Md. Code Regs. 13A.08.01.02
What age exemptions or waivers exist for kindergarten entrance? Opt-out: Age 5, parental waiver states a child lacks the maturity to attend kindergarten, or is enrolled in a child care center or Head Start 5-year-old program.
Opt-in: Age 4, local board decision that a child demonstrates capabilities warranting admission to kindergarten.
Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-301;
Md. Code Regs. 13A.08.01.02
Does the state require children to attend kindergarten? Yes Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-301 (West)
Does the state require the district to offer kindergarten and if so, full or half day? What exemptions exist for districts? Yes — Full-Day Md. Code Ann., Educ. §7-101 (e)(1)
How many hours are required for grades K-3? 1,080 hours per year for all grades except high school. Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-103 
Teacher Quality
What are the teacher-to-student ratio requirements for grade K-3? Not specified in statute, rules and regulations.
What are the requirements for teacher training and professional development in reading? Teacher preparation: Early childhood teacher certifications require coursework on processes and acquisition of reading skills, best practices in reading instruction, and use of reading assessment data to improve instruction. Md. Code Regs. 13A.12.02.03
What are the requirements for teacher training and professional development in math? Teacher Preparation: To receive certification in early childhood education (Pre-Kindergarten to Grade 3), applicant must earn a bachelor's or higher degree, which includes a minimum of 12 semester hours of coursework in both math and science.
Professional development: Tuition reimbursement is available for teacher retraining in math and science.
Md. Code Regs. 13A.12.02.03;
Md. Code Regs. 13A.07.07.01
Does the state have an early learning endorsement or license specific to K-3? Early childhood education certification (Pk-3); PK-6 Mathematics instructional leader endorsement; Reading specialist certification. Md. Code Regs. 13A.12.02.03
Md. Code Regs. 13A.12.02.25
Md. Code Regs. 13A.12.03.05
School Readiness and Transitions
Are kindergarten entrance assessments required? Each local school system must administer the department-approved kindergarten readiness assessment to a representative sample of students. Md. Code Regs. 13A.08.01.02-3
What are states required to do with the results of the KEA? The department of education must publish and disseminate aggregated assessment information to local school systems no later than November 15th each year. Md. Code Regs. 13A.08.01.02-3
Are there programs in place to guide the pre-kindergarten to kindergarten transition process? Not specified in statute, rules or regulations.
Does the state have a statutory definition of school readiness? What do states use their definition of school readiness to inform? “School readiness means the stage of early development that enables an individual child to engage in and benefit from early learning experiences. As a result of family nurturing and interactions with others, a young child in this stage has reached certain levels of social and emotional development, cognition and general knowledge, language development, and physical well-being and motor development. School readiness acknowledges individual approaches toward learning as well as the unique experiences and backgrounds of each child." Md. Code Regs. 13A.06.02.02
Assessment, Intervention and Retention
Are assessments required in grades K-3? Reading assessments are administered in third grade. Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-202
What do the results of K-3 assessments inform? Results of the reading assessments are used to inform grade promotion or intervention needs. Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-202
Are there interventions available beginning in kindergarten? What are the interventions available for students in grades K-3? Interventions are available in grade three. Interventions include enrollment in a reading assistance program. Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-202
Is there a third grade retention policy? Third grade retention is allowed with good cause exemptions. Enrollment in a reading assistance program is an option to avoid retention. Md. Code Ann., Educ. § 7-202
Family Engagement
For those states with pre-kindergarten to kindergarten transition guidance, is family engagement a requirement? Not specified in statute, rules or regulations.
For those states with third grade retention policies, is parental input required? Not specified in statute, rules or regulations.
Social-Emotional Learning
Where is social-emotional development emphasized in statute? Social and emotional development are included in the state definition of school readiness. Social development is one domain that may be measured by the kindergarten entry assessment. Md. Code Regs. 13A.06.02.02;
Md. Code Regs. 13A.08.01.02-3

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