I’m drafting this in the pick up line at an elementary school I’ve been bringing children to since 1997. Last year I watched as the principal that’s been here since then (I think, if not, she started in 1998) left. Quite a few teachers left last year as well. I’ve seen the office staff turnover, over the last few years. I’ve stuck by this school in good years and bad. My kids have had, more or less, the same teachers. We’ve had some amazing, and some not so amazing. Some we barely tolerated. Some we were relieved left before another child had them. Those are rare.
Last year they announced they were adding sixth grade back to the school. This year will be seventh, and next year will bring eighth. Will your family be staying? That’s the question on everybody’s lips.
A resounding NO is on mine.
I can’t wait to get away. We’ve had nothing but trouble for the last few years. Between bullying children, poor communication, a curriculum that has been going downhill for years, shrinking funding, and fewer classes… I’ll be happy to wave farewell to our elementary school in 2016. I’ll be happy to wave goodbye to fourth grade this year. I I was ecstatic to wave goodbye to third grade last year.
Are our public schools going downhill? Is it my area? Is it my own skewed perception? I know, I complain a lot about schooling. We’ve run the gamut. We’ve homeschooled and unschooled and private schooled and now we’re in public school and charter school. After next year we’ll just be in charter school. I’m pretty happy with charter. Their standards aren’t the same as public, they’re better in some ways, I think. They aren’t required to keep teachers just because of tenure – teachers have to be good at their job to keep it. They have the same standardized tests that public school has to have, but they don’t spend the entire year learning how to pass the test. I’m a lot happier there. I think my kids are a lot happier there. Class sizes are capped (each grade has only 250 kids). The kids have to want to be there – charter doesn’t have to keep them. It’s something between a private and a public school. It’s a happy medium as far as I am concerned.
So yah, school. I’d have my kids in an RV traveling across the country if I could. I know I say if you want something bad enough then nothing will stop you from accomplishing it, but between not wanting to leave the husband behind (and he has to work) and middle son needing speech therapy, and their outside-of-school activities…. now is not the time to make it happen. I keep saying once they’ve all graduated I’m going to travel. They can come with me then, we can unschool on the road together.