Saturday, October 05, 2013

The School Saga

Last year we made a very important decision concerning the schooling of our kids. After having some very negative experiences at our local school, we decided that we would not be sending our children there any longer. I won't go into all the details for the reasoning behind that position, but it was not made lightly.

After talking with Ross and going over all of our different options, I knelt down and told the Lord that I was putting the final result of this change in His hands. I informed Him that we knew we were not supposed to send our children to the school out here, so we had taken the time and effort to enroll the girls into the lotteries for three different charter schools, and two home school options that are hosted partially online. We told Him that we knew He would show us the right way to go, but that there was one school in particular we really wanted them to attend. If none of those lotteries worked out for us, I was prepared to home school my children.

Well, nothing worked out. The girls didn't get into any of the alternative schools we had tried for, so I made the preparations to home school. We began the process, and it was amazing. I loved it. The kids loved it. Everything worked out the way I had hoped.

There were days where things were harder than others, and there were really good days where I was still more than ready for Ross to get home so that I could get a breather from the kids, but all in all, it was a really wonderful experience. I was so grateful for the answer we had been given, and I loved not having to send my kids away every day.

Then things changed. I got an e-mail from the one school we had really been hoping for that said they had spots open for both of our girls. This is the lottery we had been the lowest on and had given up all hope of getting in to. They had started their school year two weeks before.

I was stunned. I was angry. I wanted so much to be confused, but I was not. I knew right away that this is what we were meant to do. We had our answer, and I was angry. I did not want to give up this amazing home schooling process we had started. I did not want to send my kids away. I did not want to take all this great time I had with them and trade it for carpooling every day. I didn't want to do it. I was selfish.

That being said, I did as I had been bid. I called Ross (on his birthday) to tell him the good news, and then I called my friend whose children are also in this school. After she stopped screaming for joy, she gave me the skinny on what I needed to buy for uniforms, and what to expect from this new situation.

I printed off the giant registration packet, took the girls to buy new clothes for their new school, and then sat in Chick Fil A filling out the paper work while the kids played in the play-place. Ross met me there and helped me rapidly finish so that we could get it all in on time for the kids to be able to go to school the next day. We made it.

I did not take this change very well. I did it. I followed the council of the Lord, but I stomped my foot and stuck out my tongue and told Him over and over how mean He had been to play such a nasty trick on me.

In the end, He is smarter than me, and things have worked out really wonderfully. The girls love their school and there have been some really great opportunities presented to them there. I had to be reminded that all of my reasons for not wanting to make this change were selfish in nature as they were focused on me and what I wanted and did not want. I am grateful that they were led to such a wonderful school with such amazing teachers. I am grateful for the mothers around me who have helped with car pools and service hours and making the transition as simple as possible.

Here are the pictures from their first day at their new school.
 Emma is in Mrs. Bennett's class. She loves her teacher and has a lot of new friends in her class. She is getting the help that she needs in math, and has been placed in an accelerated reading program.
 Sara is in Mrs. Thompson's class and has a friend from the ward in her class. I was most worried about her because of how shy she is, but Mrs. Thompson was wonderful about gently getting her acquainted with this new setting. Sara has been put in reading and math groups with the first graders, and loves it.

They both love all the fun specialties they get to be involved in like drama, art, Spanish, choir, and the fun new Space program.

 Just after I dropped the girls off for their first day, I went to a brunch with the ladies in my neighborhood. I had planned to bring all my kids, but instead went with the boys to get some much needed comfort and support while I missed them. The brunch went long enough that I had to run and pick Sara up from her first day and bring her back.

When we got back, my friend, Corrine (Miss Corky) had come. She knew how much I was struggling with this change, and she sat down with Sara and had a lovely talk about what a great decision this was and how she could help me when I missed her so much. She complimented Sara's cute uniform and just chatted with her about anything Sara wanted to talk about. I just love this woman and the friendship she has shown to not just me, but my children as well. She was one of Sara's preschool teachers last year, she is Emma's primary teacher this year, and she is one of Jack's preschool teachers this year.

This is not how I pictured this year going, but I know there is a reason they are there. We are blessed.


Anonymous said...

You are such an awesome example, Amanda. I think everyone struggles with not getting what they want in God's grand scheme of things (still not loving Utah County life, for example) and change is hard. I think you are awesome for putting it in God's hands though. Sorry you miss your gals. I will be coming to you in a couple years when I need help with the same issue. I am already stressing about Ophelia's school situation!

Corrine Ceran said...

Amanda, I just saw this. Thank you for your kind words, but more importantly, thank you for letting me part a part in the lives of your children. I love them. They are each so unique, and each so beautiful, and each so totally lovable!