This is a continuation of our journey to Journey. It is a post I originally wrote 4 years ago.
So, I have never really been thrilled with the public school system.
- It seems so geared towards teaching to the test.
- There is not a lot of inspiration
- too many worksheets
- the classes are SO big! (35 kids per class).
- Their school is really huge too (over 1200 kids in K-6)
I didn’t feel like I had too many options
- I tried homeschooling and while I love the idea of it, living it was not something I want to choose at this time.
- I can’t afford private school for my kids and they are doing fine, so it wouldn’t be worth the stretch.
If any of my boys were really struggling I would take them out and find a different way. But they are doing fine, so it wasn’t worth the sacrifice the two options above would require.
I didn’t realize there was another option.
There is a Waldorf Charter School
I was at the beach club Friday and overheard my friend Angela talking about this Kindergarten she was sending her daughter to. My ears perked up and I had to find out more. She had found a Waldorf Inspired Charter school that was 20 minutes away.
They do Kindergarten for 2 years.
Originally I had thought of putting T3 in Pre-K this year, but that was going to cost over $300 a month, so I opted for another year of preschool. T3 is ready for 5 days of school, I don’t know if I am ready for it. But I think he is. Especially in a developmentally appropriate and fun environment. So this seemed like an intriguing option.
I called the school right away and my friends offered to watch my boys so I could run over and see it and get an application.
While driving over I thought of what a great fit it would be for my older boys too. Angela had said there was waiting lists for older kids. I prayed that if it would be a good fit there would be a spot for them.
I got there and did a quick tour and got the forms. The enrollment person wasn’t in the office, but would call me Tuesday. The person who gave me the forms thought there may be a spot for all 3 boys.
Driving home I was thinking, “This would be the perfect school for T2!” I was praying that there would be a spot for him for sure.
Hence the chaos – suddenly I had choices!
I went home and researched and prayed and talked to a few friends. I was feeling very conflicted:
- Did I want to commit to all that driving, especially if T2 and T3 go, that could require 1 drop off and 2 pickups a day?
- Am I ready for T3 to be gone 5 mornings a week?
- Do I want to have them change schools again?
- Why can’t I just be normal and not worry about school stuff????
- What if I went to a birth while they were at school? That is a huge thing to ask a friend to go that far to pick them up. Would DH be willing to do that? What if he was out of town?
By Saturday afternoon, I realized I didn’t have enough information to make a choice. (I had specific questions about the school and other quetsions too.) I decided to fast about it. To Give it up to God.
I fasted and prayed that when I got more information the correct path would be clear to me. I felt at peace and tried not to think too much about it.
We did talk with the boys about it at Family Home Evening and said it may be a possibility.
T1 thought I was crazy and said, “If you had done this years ago, it sounds like it would have been great. But I am not changing schools!”
T2 was intrigued but unsure.
T3 had no comment.
and I talked to the enrollment person. She said they wouldn’t really know about spots for sure until the NEXT Tuesday (a day after T2 and T3 were supposed to start their school and the day of the preschool meeting.) I brought T2 and T3 with me. We got to see the Kindergarten classroom and playground. I could see T3 doing great there. But I think he would do great anywhere (though I thought that about T2.)
We got to meet the 5th grade teacher and she seemed nice. The history and literature they do sounds just up T2′s alley. They have a giant catapult in the playground and they host a medieval contest every year. This made T2 excited. It really does fit his personality.
The class sizes are limited to 26 (vs 35 at their current school). The total school size is around 250 vs 1200. T2 hates the bigness of our current school. However he knows that the teacher he is going to have this year is a wonderful teacher (he had her last year), so he feels torn.
We both agreed to not worry about it and wait and see what happens, if there is a spot or not. He was nervous about going to the first day of school at our current school for ONE day and then leaving if there is a spot, so I told him it was fine to skip the first day until we know what is happening.
My personal drawbacks
- totally selfish – so much driving! However with carpool with Angela, her DH will drop them off each day and hopefully Angela and I can share picking up the Kindergartners. But I would have to pick up T2 every day. And on some days do the trip 2 or 3 times.
- being a doula – what if I go to a birth. Before I could call the school and they could walk home with a friend. This will take more coordination. It is something I need to just trust would all work out. It always does.
- what if it isn’t as great as I think? – what if we make the change and it is not the great fit I think it will be? Though everyone I talk to about it who knows T2 agrees it sounds great for him. I think it would be great for T3 too, however his personality is not as set as T3, so it is hard to tell what kind of boy he will become. I know if I had started T1 there, it would have been great for him!