I've been dealing with some personal issues lately. Most of those are surrounding our oldest daughter, A. Before I dig into the heart of the matter, I want to know a little bit about why this has been such a heart wrenching, stressful, pain in the royal tush issue. For your consideration, this is a little love story post from last month.
In it you will find the line that said we love this school and an actual list as to why we love it. We STILL love it! Ren is signed up to attend pre-school this fall and that's not changing. What is, sadly, is where A will be attending.
In that post I didn't mention a lot about the school district we live in. We love our home, our neighborhood, the city in general. The schools however, aren't making the grade. According to the State of Ohio Department of Education, many of them are on a "continuous improvement" status and a couple are on "academic watch". These are not standards our family is willing to accept.
In walks a possible "option" for our family to try to obtain. It is called the EdChoice Scholarship Program. In a nut shell, if you live within the boundaries of a "non performing" school, as deemed by the State, then you have the option to apply for this scholarship and send your child to another school. Last fall, I was told by the school system that we lived within those boundaries. Yay for us! That meant we could keep A in the parochial school she loves so much!
Fast forward a bit and the paperwork has been submitted. Then the call comes. The parochial school called to tell us that the public school district says we aren't in those boundaries. What?!?! I was blindsided by this, but thankfully, the parochial school caught it before the deadline. Now this Mom is on a mission. I began calling the school district to get some answers. This went on for about 5 days. Five days of worrying, five days of no answers, one day of a really snotty secretary, five days of praying. Here is what I learned in those five days.
- I guess whomever I spoke with last year was clueless because they did indeed tell me the wrong boundary.
- Although the boundary was wrong, it is literally within feet of my house (we're talking 200 feet).
- Everyone goes to conferences or on vacation the same week around here.
- I was getting absolutely no where.
Until Tuesday. Then I finally spoke to someone who could/would actually try to help me. She understood, she was sympathetic, she offered to explain our case to the Asst. Superintendent and see if a resolution/solution could be obtained. It was. Just not in our favor. So, looks like A can't attend the parochial school we love so much.
You might ask why? Well, the biggest reason is, to be honest, finances. Without the help of the EdChoice scholarship, the parochial school's tuition is out of our reach. Maybe if I went back to work we could reach it, but that solution is only for this school year. Next year we would add Ren to the tuition bill.
I know some might say, yes, but it's your child's education at stake. I realize that, trust me. I have cried about this, prayed about it, and just been down right peeved off about the whole ordeal. All of this and we still haven't told A anything. That's going to be a whole lot of fun upsetting to say the least.
To get to the heart of it though, it has nothing to do with the scholarship or money (okay, well it does, but go with me here). It had to do with education standards. Not that the State of Ohio has low standards, but at the parochial school, they had very high ones. Children are challenged to be more. They are taught moral and ethical standards that are missing in the public school systems. Yes, we can teach our children these at home (and we do), but to have them reinforced at school is valuable to us. They are kids. Known by name. Not another face in a sea of children. These are just a few of this things that made the parochial school so wonderful!
To put it in a really blunt way, I'm just angry! I'm angry that we aren't made of money to give our kids the best education we can. I'm angry that the school district wouldn't do more. I'm angry that I have to break my little girls heart soon and at the same time scurry to find a school district who participates in Open Enrollment and still has room for my child. Yet, with that being said, I'm just giving it up. I fought the good fight (no harsh words were spoken), I TRIED! Now, I'm trying to make peace with the decisions that are out of my control. I'm trying to convince myself A that there are other schools and she will make new friends. I'm trying....
Thanks for checking out my rant. I felt I could share about it now that the decisions have been made by the school district. Am I happy? No. Will we get through it? Yes.