Friday, August 29, 2008

not impressed

We knew coming to this state that the schools weren't considered great. I'd started to feel better about our area as I researched schools. The elementary school Big Sis is enrolled is just received an "A" rating from the state. I don't really know what that's supposed to mean, other than it's supposed to be an indication that it's a good school. Maybe the caveat should be "for this state." Two weeks into the school year and I am not impressed.

First, Big Sis has been complaining that they don't get recess. What? Third grade and no recess? My mother-in-law (retired teacher and principal) pointed out that x number of hours was required by state law in their state. Turns out it is here, too. So, what's the problem? Overcrowding and lack of space, apparently. The school currently has over 1100 students and they just don't have enough outdoor space (especially with shade -- it is still hot and muggy here) for all the kids to get recess. Supposedly, it is a priority and they are "working" on it.

Second, Big Sis brought home a flyer yesterday for after-school Spanish classes. It would be once a week and cost $195. What?! They don't have any foreign language instruction during the school day. Big Sis has had Spanish since Kindergarten during the regular class day. While we were overseas, she received some instruction in Korean as well as a daily class in Spanish. The last school she attended was in coastal Carolina. We are now in South Florida. Which area has a more obvious need for Spanish instruction?

Oh, to be back in a DoDEA school!


Jody said...

Our school too is supposed to be "all that and a bag of chips." Aaron told me yesterday he needed glue. Apparently the four glue sticks I supplied that were listed on the supply list are not sufficient. The teacher "fussed" at the whole class because they all didn't have "liquid" glue. I sent her an email and let her know I would purchase what I am told they need. This was after I had already talked to her about Aaron having a hard time adjusting and being very emotional.

Aaron signed up for an after school Spanish program, but it was only $75 for 30 weeks. They must be taking Big Sis's class on a field trip to Miami. :):) (You know that was meant with my usual sarcasm.)

Guard Wife said...

Oh, boy. You know me and schools. I won't allow myself to get too wound up except to say, "I hear you."

$195 for once/week? You could likely find a professional house cleaning service with a Spanish speaking employee who could come clean your house once/week for less than that & Big Sis could just help with dusting and hold conversations with the employee in Spanish.

Geez. What in God's name are they going to do with that money?! Would make me want to send a note saying I thought they misplaced the decimal point. LOL

The Mrs. said...

I taught in a DODEA school and it was fabulous. The kids were bright and polite, the parents were attentive (even those deployed), classes were a nice size... wonderful. Too bad my kids cant go there cause its on an Army base.

My friend just moved back up here from south FL (her husband did a 2 year stint down there) and she was so excited to get out of there. She had similar complaints about the schools.

liberal army wife said...

we left florida 20+ years ago - because the schools in the Stuart area sucked soooo bad.


Meredith said...

Spanish? Consider yourself lucky it's offered at all. I live in "This is the U. S. of A., we speak English" country. Spanish isn't offered here for anyone until 6th grade. Yuck.

TX schools are inconsistent. This is a huge state, obvs, and not any school is as homogeneous as a DOD school. We do have one (in my district)that serves 1/2 of our USAF base and now everyone wants in it. Guess what... it's overcrowded. Ugh.

Meredith - again said...

clarification.. the school in my district is not a DOD school, just serves 1/2 the kiddos living on base. The others go to the base school.

rose_michelle said...

Wow! I don't have children yet, but the different levels of education in the different states does worry me. For that much, you can buy Rosetta Stone and teach all of them and the neighborhood kids as well ...