After a months-long battle with the school district, I finally got them to admit my son into the GATE (Gifted and Talented Education) program. I won’t bore you with all of the frustrating details, but suffice it to say a bunch of stuff happened wherein a comprehensive IQ test was administered to the Munchkin, and wherein the district failed to interpret the results correctly for many moons, despite my prolific (yet always polite) emails describing to them EXACTLY how to fix the problem.
They kept putting me off and putting me off until the week before traditional school was about to start. After being told that my son’s scores were not satisfactory and he would not be a good candidate, they finally did what they should have done from the beginning and lo and behold! Wait, your son IS really smart! Sorry we didn’t listen to you ALL SPRING AND SUMMER and ignored your emails and treated you with condescension when you visited us in person. Ooops, he’s in the 95th percentile, we actually DO want him in the program! Did we say we didn’t? We didn’t really mean that.
And my husband and I, for many reasons, pique being a small part of it, decided against enrolling him at the GATE magnet school and chose to continue homeschooling instead.
I dunno, I’m a rebel, I guess.
But really, I’m probably one of the most normal people you will ever meet. I just happen to think that given the opportunity, nothing beats a one-on-one teaching ratio. There is also a big difference in what I do, which is called “school at home” versus “homeschooling.” Mine equals state-approved curriculum and credentialed teacher visits, whereas the other is a bit more free form.
I will admit that it is quite intoxicating to be free of the entire school rut. I watch as my neighbors rush off in the morning to drop the kids off in time, and then six hours later go to pick them up. And while I certainly don’t feel sorry for them, I don’t envy them, either. I don’t miss all of the “stuff” that comes with going to traditional school, from the begging for money school fundraisers to the annoying class projects to having the principal call my home every week with a pre-recorded message, to having to buy all the clothes and supplies at a certain time. It is all very freeing.
And yet intimidating at the same time.
But I think we’ll get through it just fine.