Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Knots in my stomach

I remember my college search well.  I had the big huge book of college's that I could page through and read about any and every school out there.  My Mom did not give me any restrictions, so all I had to do was come up with what I wanted in a college and then set out for it.  I limited my search to the South East.  I wanted to be away from New Jersey and experience all that college had to offer, without being across the country.  I was already fond of those states and also had family in VA as well as GA.  From there, I narrowed down the schools based on a variety of other factors.  It was pretty easy really.  Those college books really provide a ton of info and I guess I knew what I wanted.  Once I had about a handful of schools, we slowly but surely visited all of them.  Based on those visits, I was able to eliminate about half.  In the end, it could have gone either way between two schools.  Another visit to one of my top choices, as well as an additional scholarship thrown on top for good measure, is what pushed me over the edge. 

I don't know what my college search process was like for Mom, but I know for me, it was essentially a piece of cake.  Between scholarships and financial aid, cost wasn't an issue which is normally what makes the process so difficult (I would expect).

So please tell me, why is picking an ELEMENTARY school for my children so difficult???

My stomach has been in knots for days.  Ever since our daycare gave me the Pre-K paperwork to fill out for Christina, I have felt an overwhelming sense of urgency to figure out where she will go to Kindergarten.  Let's not even discuss the other huge decision I have to make (send her off to Kindergarten on time even though she won't even be FIVE yet, or hold her back and allow her to take Pre-K again so that she will be older than the kids in her class and not younger).

Where I live, there are a gazillion schools.  Public schools are like a free-for-all, you just go wherever you want to go and private schools come in options like Catholic, Christian, Non-denominational, Montessouri, Charter, etc (etc, etc).  I can send my kid to a school an hour away if I want, or I can have the bus pick her up and take her up the road.  Does that make the choice seem obvious?  Well, I can assure you, it.is.not.  There are factors, many many factors.  Yes, I can figure out what I want out of a school for my children.  In fact, I have done just that.  Unfortunately, just because I want those things, does not mean that I can get those things.  Maybe I am being unrealistic, but I want a great school with sports and activities, music and art, oh and did I mention that I want it to be nearby and also be ahem - affordable.  I can find great schools with all of the programs I want, but the price is through the roof.  I can find great schools with a better price tag, but their programs are severly limited.  There are public schools that seem to have everything except their test scores aren't great.  Ugh!!

So maybe I am being unrealistic and maybe I'm driving myself crazy for no reason at all, but I won't give up until I find the best fit for my children.  But oh wait, there's more.  The kicker is that these wants are my wants, right?  And hey, I might want the school to have tennis and cheerleading so that the girls can participate in those sports.  But, guess what, that doesn't mean that my kids will actually want to cheer or play tennis.  Maybe CC will want to join the fencing team and oh my goodness I completely left that off my list!  What would I do then?

Give me a chill pill or something because I've got a long road ahead of me!

1 comment:

  1. Megan- it all will come. I know you don't want to hear that now. Do you have the option to move to a neighborhood in the school system you want? GOOD LUCK!!!!


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