I believe I've written in the past about the public school my kids go to. It is the best elementary school in the district and, quite often, in the county. It is not our local school. Our local school is not the worst in the county. It is the worst in the district.
There is a lottery held each year to get into the school my kids attend. As siblings are automatically allowed to attend the school, the number of open slots each year for kindergarten runs around 40. About 150 people vie each year to get their kids one of the 40 slots. Many of these parents have kids who will have to go to the worst school or second-worst school in the district.
Are we bad people, those of us who try to flee the worst of the bunch? I know some feel we are. They believe we should have our kids in the bad schools and devote our energies to making those schools better. They feel we're short-changing those schools and, let's face it, society at large, by opting out. They feel we're no better than parents who send their kids to private school.
I may be a bad person, but not when it comes to my kids. I have no qualms about having danced the happy jig when Eldest won a slot in the lottery. I want what's best for my kids. Period.
I was at a PTA meeting Thursday night. There were probably 16 people in attendance. [No surprise to anyone that it was all women, eh?] The principal was there. She was talking about an award the school is up for, and she had a verbal slip-up where she mentioned that the worst school had already had its site visit. I made a comment to the effect of, "Maybe in another lifetime."
Gasps were heard around the room. "Oh, how could you say that?" "Oh, that's terrible." "Oh, dear." These words were all uttered by women who have chosen not to send their kids to the worst school or the second-worst school or the third-worst school. They were shocked, shocked, shocked that I would believe or say such a thing.
Here's what I don't get: if the other schools aren't bad -- or, at best, mediocre -- why aren't their kids attending them? I own up to my choices. I don't get how they can't as well.