Holy cow. The kindergarten stuff. It never stops.
First, it was the uniforms. I never wore them, as I am a product of the public schools. But I don't take issue with them, because I do remember the cliquishness of girl-dom. Your value as a person was based on the wardrobe your parents could afford. My parents couldn't afford more than a couple of cool things for me each semester. The rest was run of the mill. I was therefore not cool. So, the uniform requirement at DD's new school strikes me as a good thing.
Except -- while they've told me what to buy, no one has told me how much to buy. I learned, because I thought to ask, that there is a second-hand market for these uniforms among the parents. Gently used uniforms piece sell for $5 each, and I was able to purchase a few things that way. $5, as opposed to $45 per piece. $45! Per skirt. Per pair of pants. Per jumper. Blouses may be purchased at J.C. Penney, and I did do that. I don't know why they couldn't just pick standard fare, like navy pants, skirts, etc. But no! We have to go to the official uniform store, where they are not particularly friendly, where I, the frazzled, clueless mom, went and spent an hour and a half trying to figure out what the F*CK I should be buying. And how much I should be buying. And, even though I was the only one in the store, every damned time I had a question, I had to hunt down one of the three sales people who always seemed to gravitate toward the back room for the ongoing coffee clutch as soon as possible. By the end of that visit, I was spitting nails. But, DD was such an angel. She tried on whatever I asked, and she kept a good humor. Unlike me. And for the privilege of dealing with the disinterested salespeople, I wrote them a check for $450 for the uniform pieces, many of which I probably won't need, because as I said, I'm clueless. Ugh.
We just received our "packet." With 6,000 little requirements, forms, and rule explanations. And the calendar! Will I sound exceptionally dumb if I say that it had too many words on it? Too many entries? For things that mean nothing to me? Yet I dutifully entered them into my Groupwise calendar, taking about 15 minutes to do it. How on earth do parents keep track of more than one school-age child? May I just take a moment to bow to you in submission for your awesome organization skills. And, do tell, how do you manage working for a living with all the spring breaks, mid-winter breaks, holiday breaks, summer solstice breaks, phase of the moon breaks, etc.? They have one whole month of breaks built into this schedule!
Then there is the lunch program. The school doesn't have a cafeteria, so they use a catered system. The cost is $3.50 per lunch. You do not get a refund if they don't have to provide this lunch, for example, if the school is closed for some reason. And, you must make your selections for the month and pay in advance, or your child is out of luck for the whole month! Fortunately, we actually looked at the packet when it arrived (late!) and learned that we needed to choose lunches and get the money back in by August 14. And then there's the breakfast thing. We are so spoiled -- DD can have breakfast at her current school if she wants. Not any more. Seriously, there are people who actually feed their children in the mornings? Where DO you find the time? (I'm half-kidding. DD used to eat a full breakfast at home, and a waffle on the way in if she wanted. It's the mandatory part that has me smarting at the moment.) Thank goodness that I don't have to buy school supplies. I think that it would kill me.
I guess the up side of all of this is that the school is probably exceptionally well-organized. How else could they put all of this stuff together? And they do seem nice, though I have gotten the general feeling that their philosophies are a little left of mine. That really doesn't bother me, as long as the presentations are balanced where appropriate. Children should choose their own beliefs and view of the world. But diversity of opinion is very important to me, because I have noticed that DD is very impressionable when it comes to teacher proclamations. (The silliest example I can think of is that DD's teacher once told them that the color of their blood inside their veins is blue-green, and it turns red when it hits the air. This is simply untrue, and I talked with the teacher about it, but I was surprised after my internet search how many people believe this. Yikes. Yet, DD was absolutely convinced that she had blue-green blood -- because her teacher told her, and it didn't matter a whit what I had to say about it.)
Thank goodness that they have scheduled in a parent orientation. Somehow, I'm certain that DD is going to be just fine.
As for me, I'm not so sure. I guess I'll have to check my calendar.