Monday, March 17, 2008

Roller Coaster Parenting

Some days when you are parenting, it all just feels like a crazy roller coaster ride. This morning things went fairly well. We've had less tantrums and we got to school on time, even a wee bit early.

Things were looking good as I headed for the Assistant Principal's office to verify she'd received my message confirming we would indeed prefer half-day kindergarten (the free kind) for our daughter next year.

BOOM -- we hit the first curve -- turns out she was headed into a school district meeting because the district wanted them to have more full-day kindergarten slots than they have room for... I pondered that for awhile in my noggin only to realize that probably meant no half-day kindergarten option anymore (although I couldn't quite allow myself to believe it yet).

Then I took the girl to school and we had a nice drop off. We were riding high again and I even managed to come home, make a grocery list, get all the groceries, meet the boy for lunch and do lunch at the girl's school too.

I decided to check my work e-mail and my personal while I was at home only to discover that in their ridiculously un-infinite wisdom, our school district officials and the teacher's union, rather than coming up with a public process and finding a true solution to their screwed up teacher hire and transfer policy, they did a behind-doors deal which one quickly realizes fixes nothing, and actually makes things worse!

Then I went to work which was nice enough. A little office time, a meeting downtown with grownups and coffee and chat. Then I came home. Still good until I once again checked my email only to find out that * Poof * (heading over the cliff) there will now be NO HALF-DAY KINDERGARTEN. We are now back to facing just over $300 a month in kindergarten fees! I'm ticked off no end by all this educational wrangling that's not so much working for me.

And how was your day?

9 comments:

  1. Belinda3/17/2008

    One day this sucky system will be fixed. But of course it will be too late for us. Sorry to hear this, Sue.

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  2. Thanks Belinda... sorry for all we all are going through on this one. I was really hoping they'd fix the system before we got here. Oh well... I didn't want to be able to use the $3000 for anything other a few extra hours of my daughter going to school (which should be free) - public education and all!

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  3. Well, I guess that settles that. Sheesh. You know, if they're going to make you do it, they at least shouldn't charge you for it!

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  4. Well... kbeeps (and everyone else in the state of Oregon)... when this comes up again at the next legislative session (and it will) - we need to push our elected officials to actually deal with this issue once and for all.

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  5. Fortunately our district does not charge for all-day kindergarten. This is a change that went into effect shortly before our oldest (now 12) went to kindergarten.

    It's a reall bummer to have to pay that.

    My day? Happy. 3 years ago we were hiring someone in our office. My boss didn't want to interview a particular candidate, and I suggested she reconsider. She took my advice, and ended up hiring the person. Because I suggested she take another look, this young woman moved here from another city and found her future husband. She showed up at work today, engaged. I am priveleged to have played a small part in bringing them together.

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  6. Cathy, that sounds like a positively awesome day!!!!

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  7. Something to consider about roller coasters... the "down" part is supposed to be the fun part. Not sure exactly how we can apply that to your post in a positive manner, or whether we should just junk the whole analogy altogether -- but I'm a writer. I'll work on it for ya.

    Hope today was better.

    ~A~

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  8. What?? $300/month for public kindergarten?? What??

    Is someone doing something about that? Protests? Rallies?

    Guess I won't idealize life in PDX anymore!

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  9. Oh yes actually this is statewide for now. If you qualify for free and reduced lunch you can qualify for a scholarship but there are a whole bunch of people who don't fit that and for whom the fee is a hardship. There haven't been protests per se but someone did sue saying this was illegal and sure enough a big ageny said they agreed but the legislature gave the schools 2 more years to do it before they grapple with whether to pay for it across the board or abolish it and make everyone do half day! Fun.

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