Friday, March 8, 2013

Bigger Fish to Fry

As a former catholic, that's my lame attempt at humor for a Friday during lent.

As though I needed additional stress and anxiety-causing decisions, we've had a pretty awesome opportunity fall into our laps. Charlie is currently in a Montessori pre-school class and is doing incredibly well. At the risk of sounding like one of "those parents," he's already reading and writing and spelling and working on basic math, at four. I've always been a little hesitant to send him to our local public school, for a variety of reasons, but watching him progress in his current environment just makes it even harder to happily accept - when he turns 6 and starts 1st grade, he's going to be in a class that's just beginning to develop reading skills and hasn't even considered math. There are going to be kids who don't know their letters. Which is fine - we're lucky enough to have had such a great pre-school environment for him. So the plan has always been to keep him where he is for kindergarten, and then figure out where to go from there.

Part of that "figuring out" has involved me researching the hell out of all of our local private school options. There are a ton in our area, but it was easy to narrow the list based on religion (no, thanks), proximity to home and/or office, and budget (there are three schools that charge $20K/year. AYFKM?). One of the schools that ended up on my list is a Montessori school that runs ages 3-9 and is about to expand to age 12. We set up a tour and put in an application for a first grade spot the very next day, without a lot of hope because the program is pretty much always full. A few weeks later, I got a call asking if we would be interested in starting Charlie there this coming school year, for Kindergarten. It would guarantee us a spot for grades 1-6, and guarantee his sister enrollment at age 3, as well.

And so the past week has been a whirlwind of decision making, touring the public option to make sure that we were making the right decision, budget adjusting (it's actually a $ saver), and, most importantly, figuring out how to make the logistics work. I work a normal schedule and elementary hours run from 9-3, so there has been lots of talk at work about what would be an acceptable arrangement that would allow me to continue to work a full-time schedule but still be able to run drop-off and pick-up, since the school is right down the road from my office. In addition, we're searching for a new infant care center, since husband will be the one dealing with that set of drop-off/pick-up. It doesn't make sense to stay where we are and have him drive 60 miles in a day when he works from home.

I'm feeling a little overwhelmed with how I'm going to manage the new work schedule and how we're going to handle a normal school calendar rather than the always-open-daycare schedule - obviously this day was going to come at some point, I just figured I had another year to worry about it! Also sad about resigning from the school we're in now - he's been there since he was 12 weeks old and we've been so happy with both their infant care and their pre-school. But in the end, I know that this is the best long-term decision that we can make, from the Charlie perspective. I think he's going to be happy there, and that's all that matters. That's what parents do, right?


  1. at first I thought this might be about Lent or the Pope.
    Congrats on Charlie's progress.  I started to drop some general advice but I don't think you are asking so I won't.

  2. I'll always take advice from intelligent, reasonable people, Lisleman!

  3. Good luck making all your decisions!  Analyzing schools does seem pretty overwhelming.  I know you'll do what's best for your fam!    



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