Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Never thought I'd have to choose

When we were growing up, all the kids in the neighorhood went to the neighborhood school. All the parents worked in the town in which we lived, or maybe the town over. It's just not that way anymore. I don't know anyone who works in the town where we live. My friends and their husbands work elsewhere. Everyone commutes. Kids attend different schools, all over the place, either by the parents' choice or because they were overflowed to a school out of this neighborhood due to overcrowding.

Our neighborhood school is one of the better ones in the district based on API scores. It's fairly newly built and is well maintained. But it's crowded, like every other public school these days. And due to budget cuts, the class sizes in the primary grades are growing. The thought of Drew being in a first grade class next year with 35 other six and seven year olds freaks me out.  I just think it's virtually impossible to get the best education in such an overcrowded environment.  My job is to be sure my kids get the best education.  Therefore, the hunt begins.

We are looking at charter schools and private schools.  I just can't believe that I am going to be one of those.  I want to support public schools.  I was a public school teacher.  Mom is a public school teacher.  I am a product of public schools and I think I turned out just fine.  But things aren't as they once were and so I'm changing with the times.  I'm disappointed in the fact that we live in this community yet we don't work here and chances are, our kids won't go to school here.  I find that to be very sad.

We're looking for a school for our kids which has smaller class sizes, music, physical education, art, and a strong academic program.  There are many schools that provide these things and our kids will be attending one of them.  I just wish it was our neighborhood school.


  1. This will be an issue for us as well. I am a public school teacher, Wes and I both went to public junior and high schools, and I want to support the CA public school system too, but not at the sake of my child's education. It's terribly sad! Being in education right now paints a clear picture. I will start on Monday with 46 kids in my class and only 38 desks. Will they each get the best of me? There's no possible way. I will see 218 kids the first day. Can you imagine? Do you want to guess how many books I have for those 218 students? You don't even want to know. Unfortunately, things won't be getting better anytime soon, not at the elementary or high school level. We better start a penny jar for ourselves. Private school is expensive!

  2. I'm so thankful that we left CA for this reason.

    I am SO happy with our schools. Virginia Beach has an excellent school system (just voted 10th in the nation by Great Schools I think) and both of my kids attend a top 5 school. I can't tell you how important that is to me. We've talked about moving but I greatly fear not having the same experience. Unfortunately there are so so many people in this area who don't appreciate or take advantage of what they have when there are so many people in other cities around the country who are begging for it.

    I hope you find what you're kids need. Have you sat in at the neighborhood school yet? Maybe you need to see it to get the best idea.

  3. I hope everything works out and you find the perfect place for this kids. I feel like we are so fortunate that our neighborhood school is not overcrowded...yet. They have great API scores and Isaiah's first grade class, as well as all incoming kinder classes, are still at a class size of 20. We really lucked out after having moving here knowing absolutely nothing about Tracy neighborhoods.


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