My husband and I will be moving our family to a new district this spring which means I've had to research all new options for Vincent's education. He's done so well in Kindergarten this year that we are planning to try him in 1st grade; however, I fully understand that 1st grade is going to be significantly more structured than Kindergarten. It's also going to be a big jump because instead of being one of eight, he'll be one of 20.
Owning to his Sensory Processing Disorder, larger class-sizes are overwhelming to him due to the increase in visual / auditory stimulation. It was why he had such major melt-downs last year when we attempted to place him in several mainstream Pre-K classes. Intellectually, he can handle the material; behaviorally, he has difficulty keeping himself in check when so many things are vying for his attention.
As such, I checked out the school district we'll be moving to. Given the giant increase in taxes we'll be paying, I expected the school system to be top-ranked. Imagine my surprise when these schools couldn't even muster more than a C average.
I was sickened. My husband, who grew up in that area, seemed unconcerned. I was flabbergasted. If we're expected to pay 5 figures for taxes each year (FIVE FIGURES!), I expect to see that reflected in top-notch schooling. The fact that not one - NOT ONE - could muster more than a "C" average makes me believe that property taxes in that area are not being spent properly. It also makes me not to want move there.
But since it is my husband's decision, we will be moving there anyway, and I'm left to figure out how to make up for an objectively horrible (and obviously corrupt) district. Even the private schools are terrible.
So I've been doing my best trying to research as much as possible. I've found an average Catholic school that seems to fair much better than any of its counterparts, but since it is a private school, there isn't much in the way of supplemental aid (which again just makes me annoyed that my property taxes can't go to fund the school that my son will benefit from).
I contacted the special education program coordinator that oversees supplemental aid for private schools and she informed me that they would likely not have financial assistance available to pay for the Occupational Therapist my son would need because he'd be in the Catholic school system. If I were to pull him from the Catholic school, however, she would be able to "squeeze him in somewhere."
Believe it or not, America, there is still such a thing as school choice. Their fear-mongering just made me superbly angry. How dare they tell me that just because I wanted my son to attend a Catholic school they couldn't afford to send an OT to him? That I should seriously consider enrolling him in one of their terribly ranked schools?! Ew. No thank you.
I'm just so upset / angry / disgruntled.
I know there are those of you who are still pulling for me to homeschool, but I'm still not certain that's the best option.
However, it's also NOT an option for us to place him into a sub-par school just so we can get him a bit of OT when a good Catholic school can provide that for him as well.
Argh. Sorry... this entire post was one huge vent. It's precisely why I haven't blogged consistently the last few weeks. I've been wading through all this research and back and forth with schools that I just feel depleted.
Ya know what, though? I need to keep reminding myself that God has provided thus far and will continue to do so. He made sure we had safety nets when things didn't work out each and every time a bump in the road knocked us off-track, so I'm sure He's got something in mind for Vince.