Thursday, August 13, 2009


Eduguilt: noun. Guilt felt over any aspect of a child's education.

Today is Philosopher Child's first day of school. He was dressed before we even got up, even if we had to remind him that he was missing a few things.

We made it a family activity to take him to school this morning, which is a mere few blocks from our house, and though he was excited to go to school, he complained the whole way that his backpack was too heavy. To be fair, he did have one of those insulated lunch pails and a full 32oz bottle of water in it. He is unaccustomed to wearing a backpack that isn't empty or in the shape of Cookie Monster. Still, he was very happy with his Cubs backpack even if it was heavy.

He didn't cry when the teacher told all the parents that it was time to go and the children were in good hands. He gave a happy wave, thrilled to be sitting in a seat just his size at a table that had his name written out in happy letters. He was surrounded by what he calls his kids, or his friends that he can't remember the names of. You've never seen a more content child.

And the guilt begins.

Am I doing the right thing by sending him to public school? I already saw in his kindergarten testing that he is more likely to maintain he can't do something if he finds it mundane. Maybe I should have done homeschool. After all, he is starting to read already, and in kindergarten they will first learn what letters look like. His an independent learner. Am I doing the right thing for him?

And then there was this coffee meeting for new parents. I've already been to 4 meetings at the school dealing with everything from registration to how lunch works to where he stands from an academic point of view. Husband and I opted not to go, but oh, did I feel guilty about skipping out! What if I'm missing something important in the meeting? Or maybe it's just a meet and greet.

I'm looking at the option of homeschooling in case he doesn't do so well in this environment. I've talked to a few people close to me about the subject. Of the three close women I've spoken to, one said I'm right to have my concerns. Two basically said I'm probably concerned over nothing. In any case, our first action would be to talk with the teacher if any problems come up. She seems very open and reasonable. Homeschooling is a last resort for us (not that homeschooling is a bad thing at all!), but two of the close people that I talked to seem to be concerned that I am about to yank him out of school before it's even started.

I'm a mommy. I'm allowed to be concerned. That's my view.

But I'm also not irrational.

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