This decision happened really fast (so many of our important family decisions have — the decision to buy our first house, to move back from California) and they all work out great. I’m telling myself that means it was a fabulous decision.
She brought it up. She wants the experience. I hope she doesn’t think it’s like what she sees on iCarly (fun! fun!) and the early seasons of Buffy (we don’t go to class, we live in the library!), sans demons and vampires.
And the truth is, her dad and I think she should have that experience. She sings, plays piano and violin, loves performing, and in the school system she’ll get to try out and go further with all those things. (We’re making her keep up with the Latin, though. I figure we’re doing her a favor in that she can gripe with her friends about how crazy her parents are. Bonding, doncha know).
And, yeah, it’ll be easier on both me and her sister. Catherine’s academic load is such now that it’s a full time job “doing school” with her. At Isabella’s age, it’s not yet, but Isabella needs some extra attention in reading, particularly in reading, and so it’s been hard on me doing the full time teacher thing and the full time writer thing and keeping the house spotless and all the clothes ironed and meals cooked (Oh, wait. I don’t actually do all of that house-related stuff). At any rate, it’s been hard. I absolutely 100% believe in homeschooling … but it was never about avoiding public school, so much as it was about the focus on our kids and their needs. And now, this new adventure is one of her needs. (And if it doesn’t work out — which I really don’t anticipate — we can pull her out).
The school is brand spanking new and just a block away. She can walk with her friends and be just as awed by the new building as they will be. We walked through the construction site the other day (it’s almost done) and It Is Freaking Awesome. I want to go back to school just to do elementary school there!
But, of course, it is public school, and this is my first experience putting my kids in public school. So tell me it’s gonna be great. Or share your horror stories.
I don’t actually have many horror stories. My experience was definitely more iCarly (fun! fun!). No kids being slammed against lockers and stuff like that. But there was still an undercurrent. In junior high, some kids were knifed in the bathroom (in junior freaking high!), but no one ever extorted my lunch money or blackmailed me to do their homework for them. About the worst I can say is that the busses needed shock absorbers and I usually felt ill by the time we arrived. And waiting in the rain…
So there you go. Tell me it’s gonna be great. Or tell me a horror story. I’d love to hear them!