Having spent the last seven weeks of 2011 under a hell of a project deadline, my presence at home and at the kids' schools and in town has been almost nil. When I took Youngest to school on Tuesday, the first day back after the two-week Christmas break, I felt as if I'd been away from the school for an entire semester.
And it felt good to have been away. I have clearly overspent my time at that school. Eldest started there when Youngest was months old, which means it's been more than nine years since we first became a part of that community. I loved that school. My kids have all loved that school. Youngest still does. It is his school, after all.
I pin my dwindling love for the mechanism that is that school to the announcement on the day of Daughter's fifth grade promotion that the principal was leaving. The she/he combination of the interim co-principals for the next semester was laughable. And then the new warden came almost exactly two years ago. "Warm and fuzzy" isn't a term used to describe her. And, while I know I should be cognizant of the fact that locals read this and what I say here can be used against me in a the court of public opinion, fuck that.
All that people say about that school, long before she arrived, is now true if we are to look at her as the representative of the school. She is stand-offish. She acts far superior than others. She acts the role of prison warden. Her rules for behavior do seem quite Stepford-like. She is rigid. She communicates poorly. In short, she really is what people think the school is like.
If I were a wing-nut conspiracy theorist, I would believe that she was recruited to exaggerate all of the behaviors the school's parents and staff are accused of displaying as a means of making the elimination of its by-lottery status an absolute done deal.
There is another school, a K-8 one, which has as part of its parent pool a professional magician. He's putting on two shows this month as a fundraiser for that school. It's a public school, part of our school district. And it's a magic show, a fun outing for a family with kids. He asked to have a flier promoting his show sent home in the Friday folders of all schools. Frankly, it's not unlike promoting the Christmas tree recycling program one of the high schools is putting on. Why the hell not, right?
Our principal told him no, it didn't make sense for our school to promote another school's fundraiser.
That right there?
That's the attitude we as a whole are accused of having.
That's the behavior we as a whole are accused of exhibiting.
That's the sound of the by-lottery school becoming a neighborhood school.
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