Early Childhood Screening

Minnesota State Law requires that all preschoolers be screened once prior to entering public and some private kindergartens. School District 761 begins inviting children to screening at age three. Earlier is better! Waiting until a child is ready to start kindergarten may be waiting too long. It is best if your child can be screened when they are 3 years old. 

If your child's name is on the Owatonna Area School's census, you will be notified that he/she is ready to be screened. If you are NOT on the census, you will need to set up an appointment by calling (507) 444-7900 or click to register today. Note that screening dates are held between August and May. We do not hold screening dates in June or July. 

Licensed School District Staff, with backgrounds in child development, conduct the screenings. Early Childhood Screening is a comprehensive "peek" in the window of your child's development. Specialists observe your child performing a variety of tasks to screen communication, cognitive or thinking skills, and fine and gross motor development.

Screening also includes checks on hearing, vision, height and weight, a developmental history review, an immunization review, and a social/emotional screening worksheet for parents to fill out based on their child's behavior. Early Childhood developmental screening helps a school district identify children who may benefit from district and community resources available to help in their development. Early Childhood Developmental Screening includes a vision screening that helps detect potential eye problems but is not a substitute for a comprehensive eye exam. Developmental screening results are interpreted according to your child's chronological age. Just a reminder there is no pass or fail!

This screening provides encouragement to parents as they handle the important task of raising today's preschooler. It allows families to access a wide variety of resources based on child and family needs.

Early Childhood Screening is FREE and takes about an hour.

If you have any questions or concerns about the screening process or its requirements, or if you have concerns about your child's development and he/she is not scheduled for screening this year please call 507-444-7900.

What to expect

Early Childhood Screening is an early look at a child's development. The ideal age for screening is 3 1/2 years old. This allows health and development concerns to be addressed one to two years before a child enters kindergarten. Nurses/teachers will ask your child to perform a variety of tasks to look at his/her ability to:

  • talk (communication),
  • think (cognitive),
  • use their fingers (fine motor), and
  • use their arms and legs (gross motor).

In addition, his/her hearing, vision, height and weight will be looked at during this time. The results of this screening will be discussed with parent(s)/guardian(s) that same day.

This whole process of screening will take approximately 1 hour. When you arrive, you will check-in and possibly receive some additional paperwork to fill out. Parents will stay with their child for each portion of the screening. First, your child will meet with our Nurse for the height, weight, vision, and hearing screening. Next, your child will meet with one of our Developmental Screeners. The Developmental Screener will assess overall readiness and check for areas of concern. Finally, an Exit Interviewer will meet with you to review your child's results and discuss any possible actions that may be needed for your child.

If you have any questions or concerns about the screening process or its requirements, or if you have concerns about your child's development and they are not scheduled for screening this year please call (507) 444-7900.

Find a Screening time

Click below or call (507) 444-7900 to find an available screening date and time. We offer screening most Thursday afternoons and evenings and one Saturday a month during the school year. 

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