A survey, conducted with more than 500 kindergarten teachers across the country, reveals that America's kindergarten teachers believe most young children are unprepared for school when they enter kindergarten, and veteran kindergarten teachers believe that this situation is deteriorating.
When asked, "On average, how well prepared academically would you say children are when they first enter your kindergarten classroom?" two-thirds of teachers (66 percent) stated that students were only somewhat or not at all prepared, and only 6 percent felt that students were very well prepared academically.
According to the teachers who were surveyed, children entering kindergarten are weakest academically in their knowledge of the alphabet and phonics, with two-thirds of teachers reporting that the majority of children do not know their alphabet when they enter kindergarten.
Though many early learning researchers cite the crucial importance of a child's oral language development in relation to future academic success in reading and other subjects, less than 9 percent of responding teachers described the oral language skills of entering students as "very good."