Monday, March 07, 2011

It's March!

Wow! I've written 2 posts this year. Two. And it's March. I'd love to tell you that the year has been filled with amazing and exciting things. We've traveled, we've had amazing adventures and lived life to the fullest. But I can't. The truth is that each day brings the daily stuff that an ordinary life is made of. Meals, chores, laundry, dishes, laundry, dishes (oh, wait, I repeated myself) work, school bedtime wars. But we've also had some great gatherings with friends and family. We've read some good books and I've discussed some of those books. I may have created something but I don't actually recall what it may have been, oh, a paper globe at Mom Scouts, but it's just like the two other ones I have in the dining room. Oh, wait, I have a picture I can share with you!
We had a week of warmer weather and Owen spent several days playing in the puddles in the yard in his green frog galoshes.

One day he fell asleep in his burrow. Which is a corner behind a small couch where he piles couch cushions, blankets and throw pillows. He calls it a burrow.
We've also been trying to decide where O will go to school in the fall. Which would be easy if it weren't for school lotteries. Lovely sort of concept. School choice is really more about having the choice to fill out an application, send it in on time, and keep your fingers crossed that your not yet five year old child's name is picked out of a hat. Incidentally we are #21 and #10 on the waiting lists of two spanish immersion schools. #10 is for the school in our district. O would actually be able to ride a bus to that one. The other one is 18 miles away. ONE WAY! But a really very nice school. He is also #34 on the waiting list for an elementary school in the district south of us. He could of course go to the neighborhood school which is less than a mile away. He would have to walk there. Even in Kindergarten. And that thought brings to mind the statement OVER MY DEAD BODY! Maybe when he's 10 he could walk to school. But only after he's successfully walked to the neighbors house by himself a hundred times. WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND THINKS A 5 YEAR OLD COULD WALK TO SCHOOL ALONE!? No, there are not, to my knowledge, crossing guards. I can safely say this because in the 9 years we have lived here I have never once seen one. EVER! So the school that would include transportation (other than my car) has a wait list. Nice. Public education at it's finest. You can go to school, and in MN, provided you fill out the application, wherever you long as you provide your own transportation. This however, is not the thing about this process that has bothered me the most. What has bothered me the most is the lottery. I've not seen Waiting for Superman but I've heard that the lottery process is talked about in the movie. Education is a hot issue for me because I'm an educator, but it's intensified now that the parent role has been added to my life. Up until this year I have felt fortunate to have access to the educational opportunities available to us in the school district we live in. The ECFE (Early Childhood Family Education) program is wonderful. It is a nationally recognized program. I am not feeling that way about the actual school system Owen will be going through. Perhaps it's their marketing. It's shabby in comparison to other near by districts. And while I feel like the neighborhood school would be fine, I don't want fine for Owen. I want to know the education he gets is going to be good. Great even. Excellent would be best. And I know that a large factor in his success in his education will be our support and advocacy but I want to feel like the school district will be stepping up to the plate too. And I don't feel that. I don't get that impression overall. The principal at the neighborhood school seems great. Enthusiastic, energized, and motivated. He knows the challenges of the population he serves and he's doing things to promote growth and achievement. As a teacher I found it to be motivating. But what does that mean to me as a parent? Maybe I can yet determine that because I'm still at the beginning of the journey. Oh, and it's March. But despite it only being March I've been spending a significant amount of time investigating, touring researching and worrying about where O will go to school 6 months from now! I've spent the last 4 years not planning ahead and now I have to start planning ahead again!

I'm hoping for spring to come soon. Very soon. I'm done with snow and gray and blah winter. I need something to take pictures of!


Miranda said...

The plantes must have shifted. I have more post than you this year and I only just started posting like a wheek ago... huh!

Miranda said...

Crap.. planets. I just typed it wrong when I was trying to correct it..