Age adjustment – best time to take the 4 year old SEES test??

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  • This topic has 13 replies, 2 voices, and was last updated 4 months ago by ChicagoMamma.
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    • #12614 Reply

      I have a kid taking Kinder SEES test this coming fall/winter.  Since even a small difference in age can make such a difference in child development for 4 year olds, I heard that they slightly adjust the 4-year old scores by age [for example on Classical score, the child’s %ile score is weighed against others that are within a couple months of the same age – for example a Sept birthday would be weighed against older 4’s and an August one would be weighed against kids with summer birthdays – not sure if same is true for RGC].  I have have not seen it published anywhere officially, but it does make sense that the testing system would account for this.  But I assume that, if this is true, this considers just the birthdate, not the age when taking the test?  or is it both?

      The test window is typically Oct – Feb [5 months!]

      The issue is CPS notified families in late May this year of both lottery results and SEES scores for Kinder.  That is _really_ late to be making decisions.  I don’t know if they’ll move it back to April this year, but still….

      IF the child takes the SEES exam before a certain day [mid-November I think…], I understand that you can get the scores from CPS before the Dec application deadline, although you don’t actually find out what offers you would get, the scores give a pretty good idea.  So that is a big advantage in terms of making decisions.  It also helps w/private school deadlines.  But I am worried taking it too early as a young 4 year old would not result in as good of a score, than for example taking it late, when the child is several months older.   Any experience or knowledge on this?  Pros/Cons?


    • #12639 Reply
      Southside Dad

      <p style=”text-align: left;”>When to test your child is a hard decision, but I can share my experience for my 2 children.</p>
      <p style=”text-align: left;”>For child 1, our top two schools were Lenart (RGC) and Poe (Classical). We tested child 1 early in Nov at 4 years and 9 months, and the classical results were great, while the RGC results weren’t so great. So, we adjusted the SEES rankings and put Poe at 1 since we were pretty confident on getting accepted, and got an acceptance letter in the fall. This would be a “pro” of testing early – being able to get test results and alter rankings accordingly.</p>
      Child 2’s 5th birthday is August of this year. Child 1 was an avid reader at the time of the exam (one of the reasons we tested early), but Child 2 was not. We did not have the option of testing Child 2 early because of Covid, but we scheduled the test as early as possible in Jan of this year at 4 years, 4 months. We later got an offer for Poe. Even though Child 2 couldn’t read at the time, the classical reading score was actually higher than Child 1. This showed that a young 4 year old can get a high score, since they are not being compared to older 4 year old.

      In both instances, we had backup magnet schools just in case we got no offers, so we were confident they’d both go to a good school no matter what, which was the key for us.

    • #12648 Reply

      They adjust for age at the time of the test. Two kids with the same birthday will be compared against different ages if they test in November and February.

      I tested both mine as early as I could schedule to get the results early and rerank as necessary.


      • #13280 Reply

        I don’t know why I’m having trouble understanding this but… what is it about testing in November and February that is unique? My understanding is that they always compare children given their actual birthdate.


        • #13286 Reply

          If a child’s birthday is 1/1/17, they’ll be in the 4yrs, 10mo age bracket if they test at the beginning of November, but 5yrs, 1mo if they test in early February. So two children with the same exact birthday won’t actually be directly compared against one another if they take their tests three months apart.

          • #13287 Reply

            Ahhh got it. Thanks for clarifying!

    • #12663 Reply

      Thank you this is so helpful!  Lots to think about.  My older two were Sept and Nov Birthdays and I tested both in February, so they were 5 (one almost 5 1/2).  Neither could quite read fluently and the reading scores they received (in the ‘80s) did not get us in.  So it makes sense that the 5+ year olds are expected to know a bit more, but at the same time it is hard on them.

    • #13040 Reply
      ORS Mama

      Hello! I’ve been trying to scour the answer to this question through CPS, but haven’t found an answer, and this group seems to have a wealth of knowledge so.. my son has a September birthday so we were thinking of doing the early kindergarten exam and then ideally the SEES test if he passes. If he doesn’t get good scores on the SEES test can we then decide to hold him back a year  and then take the SEES test again when he’s actually 5? Or does he only get one shot at the SEES for kindergarten? Thanks in advance!

      • #13041 Reply

        Your son gets 2 shots. He can repeat a K SEES test the following  year.


        • #13042 Reply
          ORS Mama

          @ES Great, thank you!

    • #13079 Reply

      So wait….now with ‘early entry’ you can basically try twice for K (two years in a row) for the same kid if your kid has Sept-Dec Birthday?  Their 4’s and 5’s year?

      That increases the pool of kids testing for what is already not a lot of spots.



      • #13096 Reply

        The kid still takes only one spot at the end of the day. So while there will be more applicants due to the Sep-Dec bday ones, those will not take any extra spots. Also, it will be a quite insignifican number as they need to pre-qualify first to test and also not all parents will want early entry for them.


    • #13276 Reply

      I understand that they adjust for age, but in practical terms, how does this effect the score? Does anyone know?


    • #13277 Reply

      I understand it is the same test, but the older the kid is, the more questions they are expected to answer correctly to get a certain score,  i.e., go more along in the test (after 2-3 wrong answers in a row, the test stops).


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