Friday, September 11, 2009

[JessFinds] Ready to talk about it

So, Miss Crab did not have a good first day of Kindergarten. She had major anxiety in the weeks leading up to school starting. She is a very super-sensitive child who gets overwhelmed easily. On the very first day, she was singled out for not being able to trace a lower case "a" in the manner that the teacher wanted her to. She started to cry, kids looked at her, this made her cry harder. She was removed from the room.

Then she was told she was "wasting everyone's time" and that the class would not go to recess until she stopped crying. That pressure freaked her out. She went in to meltdown mode. The class missed recess. Kids went home and told their parents that they did not get to see the playground because Miss Crab cried. Welcome to Kindergarten!

I wanted to go in to mama bear mode and knock some heads together, but I kept calm and addressed the issue directly with the teacher. Like a grown-up.

The teacher was too busy defending herself (protesting a bit too much) to ask if Miss Crab was doing ok or to say that she was sorry Miss Crab had a rough start. She told me that Miss Crab was a "sweet girl" but a liar. Then she told me she: "has a job as a teacher and the children have jobs too ... they can not go outside until those jobs are completed."

Ok. I am not an uptight parent. Really. I am actually pretty mellow about a lot of things. This just threw me for a loop. Did I really need to start advocacy for my kid in the public school system on the FIRST day of Kindergarten?

So, we made a family decision to pull Miss Crab out of the school and put her in a Montessori program. A calm learning environment where teachers are guides and there is plenty of time for transition from activity to activity. We talked about it for years and probably should have followed our gut instinct about six months ago.

Divine Intervention? We were told there are normally waiting lists but for some reason, one spot was available. They have not already started - they begin on Monday. So that is beautiful timing.

Not so Divine Intervention? We have no idea how we are going to afford it! We are pooling resources. I will sell things. Seriously. My MIL has fronted all of the registration fees and purchased a small wardrobe of uniforms. I convinced or maybe cajoled my father into handling tuition (the process gave me an ulcer). I want to find some way to alleviate that asap. He is not going to be happy when he sees the payment schedule that was just shown to me.

Ultimately, it is the right thing to do by my kid. She needs to have a safe environment to learn.

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