It's 9:40 in the morning and my day is already shot.

We woke up around 6:30 a.m. and I was full of confidence that I would get my son into the school I wanted him in and that he wants to go to. Ah, how naive I am when it comes to bureaucracy. First given the run-around (somewhat) by the Orenco principal. I was told by the front office that they would *love* to have my child and that they need parents who care and want to volunteer (I am of said group now that I have the time). But, alas, the principal over at West Union was denying all the transfers coming from our neighborhood. (Grr, now the site shows West Union Elementary, but when we signed we were told Orenco would be the school)... but I digress. ... So I was told that my best bet would be to go to West Union and talk to the principal there. Now mind you, I haven't really spoken to the principal of Orenco except for yesterday afternoon when I was trying *not* to get Black and irate at this man.

So we go over to West Union, which is 10 minutes away driving and waaaaaay out in the countryside. Points taken off there, it's in the boonies! (yes, we live that close to countryside). The school is older, and dark and you could watch Josh's face fall the more of it he took in.

I got in to see the principal and we chatted a bit. He explained to me that they have 5 empty classrooms at the moment (ok, fine, but do you have the staff and resources to fill those rooms even if you had the kids? -- I should have asked that while I was there). And that the agreement was made 2 years ago, before our development was built and demographics actually made, that West Union would get the kids on our neighborhood even though directly west and south of us the kids go to Orenco. West Union was planning on our neighborhood to fill out their classrooms (most of the kids here are newborn to pre-school, there aren't many school age. Guess they forgot to take that into account).

I explained that my son has been registered at Orenco since the middle of August, that he attended the first day there and that we would both prefer that he stay there.

So the principal phoned the principal at Orenco and they agreed to a compromise of a 2-week try-out at West Union. Josh wasn't pleased and neither was I, but they won't be able to say that I was un-cooperative. I get the feeling that they hope we'll become accustomed to West Union and not put up a fight. Well, they don't know me and they definitely don't know Tim.

Josh is determined to not spend more than a week at West Union. He looked on the verge of tears when we left.

Now the kicker. Apparently Orenco is really full, and it seems like it is. There are plenty of kids there whereas West Union only has 300 kids for all 6 grades (if that many, enrollment is low --at least that is what the west Union principal told me enrollment was). But the 3rd grade has the same number of kids that Josh's class at Orenco does. So there is no loss and no gain directly for my son. His teacher in both schools has the same burden of work.

I would prefer that Josh go to Orenco because 1) it makes sense, the school is 2 blocks away versus the almost 5 miles that West Union is. 2) It's a nicer and newer school and 3) it's convenient for me.

I would be concerned about academics, but I don't know much about either school right now. I have the prejudice that a newer school with new equipment and excited teachers is a better learning environment than an older one with non-excited teachers. I also have the feeling that given the current budget shortfalls I'll be after-schooling Josh anyway.

Oh, and Josh is out of school for the day. Neither school cares that he attends today. Just so long as he goes to West Union tomorrow. Right now I am tempted to just keep him home again, but I need the mental break! I love my child too much to homeschool him right now. It's already stressful having him home and having my whole plan for the day screwed up.

Ok, time for me to get ready to go. I have a ton of errands to run, most involving the DMV. And we have to go back to Orenco to get his school supplies! Why can't they let this *one* kid stay where he is???!!!!

*Names have been withheld because I am a nice person. It's enough that I gave the school names.

Links: How to get the right education for your child by Malkin Dare

The Big Book of Home Learning by Mary Pride.


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