Please know that what I am about to say is in NO way meant to be judgemental – I promise you. We are at that time of the year where most children are already placed in the grade they are going to be in for the upcoming year…did you hear me???? They are “placed” in their grade for the upcoming year – not …they have just naturally progressed to the next grade. What has happened people???? I will tell you what has happened. Some where, some way, some how – some one got the idea to inform parents that if their child was born on a certain day or in a certain month, or worse…”small” – they should “repeat” a grade, be “held back” or be given the option to put them where they wanted them in school. So, you know what has happened? You have 4 year olds who will be turning 5 very soon, in class with ALMOST 6 1/2 year olds. When did it become okay to play with the chemistry and make-up of an entire grade? Which then in turn stays with these kids over the years – meaning that you will also have a freshman or sophmore in high school driving your “4 year old” home from school! You get the idea. But here’s my real point – why and WHEN did we ever become so afraid to see our kids not be perfect, not be number one, not be the BEST in school or in sports?? When did size or birthdate become the criteria for which your child’s path and life should begin? I sadly feel that WE, as parents, have become so over involved and truthfully- controlling, that we have forgotten to let nature take it’s course. Personally, out of my 4 kids – I have a July birthday (early) and a November birthday (late). I never held either back and guess what? They both survived. In fact , they are both doing GREAT!!!! Perfect? Of course not! Just really, really good. They are where they should be , doing what they should be doing. I think they are both incredibly happy and healthy and some days are better than other but guess what…that’s life! All of this “red-shirting” is sending an incredibly detrimental message to our children – We’re not sure you can do it next year so in an effort to “protect” you, we’ll give you every insurance policy possible and only let you surround yourself with people we know FOR SURE you’re bigger than, better than and for sure… older than. This way, you can be 100% sure that you don’t have to show the world what you are capable of. You don’t ever have to worry that you will fail because you’re way ahead of the game. But I forgot to tell you about all of the amazing things you learn about yourself when you do fall down or have a set back – you find out who you are, you rely on YOURSELF, you go through life without excuses, you figure out that we ALL make mistakes and that is the only way we learn! You learn at age 5 to be ACCOUNTABLE and to know it’s okay to need forgivenes as well as to give it. And soooooo much more. I know. I didn’t tell you all what you wanted to hear. I may have offended some – that was not my intention. But I started by telling you that I was sorry. And I needed to vent.