First day of school

And I am so relieved. My older son started at a new school today. You may recall that I hated his teacher last year--not as a person, just as a teacher--and thought the school wasn't set up to deal with kids who were already reading. It's a long story about why he was going to our neighborhood school, but the short version is that we had been planning to move to another city in another state, and I'd done all the school search stuff there. He'd gotten into my dream public school (K-8, with siblings automatically accepted). Then I had my gut-wrenching epiphany and asked for a divorce, and that plan fell apart.

So I hadn't done any leg work in Manhattan, including taking the G&T ("gifted and talented") test. Rumors were that our local school was good, so we went there. I don't really believe in pulling kids out for special G&T programs, in the abstract. I feel like teachers ought to be teaching to all the kids, and it's possible to structure things so that you can give kids at each level what they need. But the problem with that theory is that if everyone else has pulled their kid out into a G&T program, then your kid is going to be the one coming home complaining of boredom every single day. And, compounded by a teacher like we had who just shouldn't be in the classroom, it was even worse.

So we did the G&T test. And then had a wacky adventure with the NYC DOE that caused this crying in the conference room episode. And then we got assigned to his current school, in the G&T classroom for his grade. The school is a solid 25 minute walk away, unless some miracle occurs and he gets assigned to a bus route. But, but, but--his teacher! She's young and idealistic and not jaded by the whole thing yet. She's going to come in with her A game, instead of just phoning it in to accumulate years until her pension. And she looks like she isn't going to be tipped over by precocious, mischievous boys.

I walked out of his classroom and burst into tears. Not because I was particularly sad about school, but because I'm so relieved.

The next couple of posts are going to be more about you as parents and school and the social scene, but if you want to talk about anything specific to your kid or teacher or any of that, please post here. Homeschoolers, feel free to express your frustrations and happinesses, too.