School of Choice

My first baby just wrapped up his first week in kindergarten. I predicted I would be sobbing as we dropped him off on his first day, but somehow I refrained. My little man barely glanced back at me as his teacher brought him to class. His demeanor helped stabilize my emotions.

My thoughts were another story…

Would he remember to use the bathroom and how to wipe his coolie when he poops? Will he drink enough water? Will he be kind towards his classmates? What color will he be on for behavior at the end of the day?”

The first day of school is filled with photo ops and lots of excitement. A new year and new beginnings.

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Deciding where your child goes to school is a big decision that requires research and prayer. There are so many choices. Public? Charter? Private? Home? Montessori? Waldorf?

We decided when my son turned 4 that he would attend VPK and see how he did before committing to a decision for kindergarten. I felt pressured to homeschool because a lot of my close friends were doing it, and with my background in elementary education, I felt almost obligated. Every time I thought about the homeschooling possibility I would get super anxious and have a strong sense of resistance.

I’ll never forget one night when cleaning up from dinner I was in tears. My Babes gently wiped my face and told me I don’t have to homeschool, and released me from that pressure.

I realized, “I don’t have to be super mom.” I can be confident in the things I do well and it’s ok for me to send my child to school and go back to teaching full time one day.  

So, we began to think and research schools. I preferred to send him to private school, but figured that was way out of our budget. I’m so thankful for our friends who told us about Step Up, this awesome grant that offers scholarships to people who qualify based on family size and income. I’ll share more details about the application process in another post.

The cool thing was, we didn’t have to look very far. One of the schools that accepted Step Up is relatively close to our house. I sensed the Lord leading us to this school. We only toured one school, only filled out one application, and only paid one registration fee. In fact, I put down the deposit of $300 to reserve Aiden’s spot prior to receiving the confirmation of the scholarship. I felt strongly that I needed to take that step of faith.

A few thoughts when making the school choice:

1. Freedom to choose. There is freedom in choice, mama. You don’t have to answer or convince your other mommy friends or family of your decision. What works best for your family? For your child?

2. Take it year by year. When we chose the school my son is at for kindergarten, we didn’t have to make a commitment that he would graduate from high school there. If down the road we decide to switch to a different school, we can do that. One year at a time.

3. Peace and unity. Be at peace with your decision, Mama. I think it’s very important for parents to be united in their decision making process as well.

What is your school of choice for your kiddos? How was their first day of school? Answer in the comment section below, I’d love to hear from you!

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