students attentive and engaged in class

To enter kindergarten, your student must be five years old on or before August 31.

For the 2019-20 school year, kindergarten students will begin their year with a "rolling start."  That means half of the students will begin school on September 9 and the other half will begin on September 10. On September 11, all students will attend together.  Staggering the start of our youngest learners is a practice that allows kindergartners to make a smoother transition to learning routines of the classroom and getting to know their teacher in smaller groups, setting them up from the beginning to feel more comfortable, confident and excited about school.

Schools will provide specifics regarding which day students will attend for their first day. If there are special circumstances that may require different scheduling for a child's first day of school than the day assigned, families are advised to contact schools directly.

Also, kindergarten teachers will be contacting parents/guardians to schedule a 20-30 minute family conference that will take place September 4-6.

As of July 28, 2019, a new state law removes the personal and philosophical option to exempt children from the MMR vaccine required for school and child care attendance. Learn more...


Kindergarten registration begins at your local school.  Enrollment packets are available in mid to late January in the front office of all Northshore elementary schools.  Your neighborhood school may also hold special parent tours, an orientation, or open house in the spring or late summer before school begins. Watch your school's website for back-to-school registration details, school calendar and start dates, bus routes and pick-up times. 

Additional information on registering for kindergarten and forms can be found on the Register for Kindergarten page. Some schools may have additional forms for you to fill out about your student.  Information about school registration dates and times are published online on the district homepage and school websites and newsletters.

Additional kindergarten activities, tours, and parent information sessions are scheduled by individual schools. Find your school's planned activities here or by calling the school office.



A district-wide kindergarten information night is provided in March. Teachers, administrators, and curriculum specialists  present parents with information about the Northshore School District's kindergarten program. The evening is intended for parents only and does not require registration to attend.

Kindergarten information night for students entering the 2020-21 school year is Wednesday, March 18, 2020 at the Northshore Performing Arts Center on the Bothell High School campus at 7:00 PM.  A livestream of the event will take place with translators available in Spanish, Russian, Korean, Vietnamese and Chinese in the Black Box Theater adjacent to the main auditorium.



The kindergarten program in the Northshore School District provides children a foundation for academic success and develops an enthusiasm for life-long learning. Student outcomes are standards-based and focus on the whole child:  academically, socially, emotionally, and physically.  

Before school begins, kindergarten teachers will meet with families to get to know the students, their families, and their stories. Additionally, teachers evaluate students in many areas to determine students' strengths. This helps teachers plan a program based on the needs of the children.

The developmentally appropriate learning environment provides substantial opportunities to learn through purposeful play that honors student choice and provides teacher-guided, interactive small-group, and large group experiences. The kindergarten school year is an important time to provide students with rich, relevant learning experiences that allow them to reach goals that are both challenging and achievable regardless of their varied experiences and backgrounds upon entering kindergarten.


Kindergarten Readiness


Highly Capable Process for Kindergarten

The kindergarten eligibility process incorporates two steps--screening AND assessment. All kindergarten students will be automatically screened for potential highly capable eligibility.

Students meeting the criteria threshold on the screening tool will move on to assessment. Parents of students moving on to the assessment level will be notified. Per Washington state law, parent permission is required to assess a student. Assessments will occur during the school day and will be administered by trained proctors.

Visit the Highly Capable web page to learn more.


Early Entrance to Kindergarten

Although Northshore does not encourage early entry for the vast majority of students, application for testing for early entrance is available at parent expense for students who turn 5 between September 1 and November 30. Students who turn 5 on December 1 and beyond will enter kindergarten age appropriately.

  • Please read the Early Entrance to Kindergarten FAQs before completing the application.
  • The application window for early entrance for the 2019-20 school year has now passed.  Applications for 2020-2021 will be available February 1, 2020 and will be accepted through June 28. Late applications are not accepted.
  • Additional early entrance information is available through the Office of Elementary Education, 425.408.7705.

Application Process

To apply during the application period (February 1 - June 28), submit the following to the Office of Elementary Education, Northshore School District, 3330 Monte Villa Parkway, Bothell, WA  98021:

  • Parent Application Form, Kindergarten Checklist and Consent for Mutual Exchange of Information, if applicable.
  • Preschool Kindergarten Checklist completed by your student's preschool teacher.
  • Check for $200 payable to Northshore School District or NSD.

The application will be available to download on this website on February 1. Or,  you can pick up an application at the Northshore Administration office (3330 Monte Villa Parkway, Bothell) or one will be mailed to you by calling the Office of Elementary Education: 425.408.7705, after February 1.

Application Timeline

The early entrance to kindergarten application window is open from February 1 - June 28. Late and incomplete applications are not accepted.

Upon receipt of the complete application packet by the Office of Elementary Education, all will be forwarded to a district psychologist.  In late June or July the psychologist will contact parent/guardian directly to schedule the student's assessment.

Kindergarten early entrance results may be shared with parents immediately following the assessment or within 10 days following. If your child qualifies, results will be sent to the neighborhood school.  Following your child's qualification, parent/guardian will then enroll their child in their neighborhood school.

Final consideration will be determined by the school administration after a six-week trial period.