Sunday, June 6, 2010

Baker's quarter dozen

* Alec still drinks several bottles a day, but we're starting to make the transition to straw cups with water or whole milk during meals and when we go out. I hadn't thought before about the fact that I have very little experience with the way milk behaves in a straw cup; K was allergic to milk until she was two, so hers was always rice milk, and we tend to bring water for her these days. So I hadn't realized quite how... chunky milk gets in such a short time. Yeeurgh.

*Speaking of milk, it's been about three weeks since the last time I pumped. I had wanted to make it the entire year, but my supply drops pretty quickly if I reduce my schedule even slightly, and it just felt so good when I reduced my schedule down to three times a day that I couldn't make myself go back even when it was clear my supply was drying up. And once I was producing less than 10 ounces a day, it wasn't worth it any more to try to limp across the finish line. Alec is a gigantic, robustly healthy baby who is doing just fine drinking formula for a month. I figured out recently that I produced a quart a day for five months, and 25 ounces a day for at least three more months. It's a rough calculation, but I pumped 62 gallons of milk in the past year. Moo. But a rather accomplished moo.

* We finally enrolled K in kindergarten a couple weeks ago. We finally landed on public school because the one she's currently going to is one of the best in the city and she would already know some kids in her class. It has some green space and a playground next to it, and it's two minutes away from B's library. We still have reservations about Philadelphia schools, but it seemed like a good situation for early elementary school.

So you can imagine our reaction when we discovered that that's not the school K will be attending. Her preschool program isn't available in every school, so we were assigned to the nearest one with a Bright Futures class, but we don't actually live in that school's area. Our actual school is surrounded by asphalt and doesn't have a playground. And its test scores are a great deal worse. Now I certainly don't think that test scores are any sort of measure of how good a school actually is. But in the era of No Child Left Unscathed, my worry is that a school with poor scores will have to spend a great deal more time prepping for the tests than a school with good scores. And a kid like K, if she takes after her father and me at all, will be shunted aside on the assumption that she'll provide a good score and doesn't need any attention.

So I'm not sure what we're going to do. In the positive column for the new school, when we went to our current school, the office staff was unspeakably rude to us, whereas the reaction of the office staff at the new school was a cheerful "Welcome!" That was enough not to make me immediately run to request a voluntary transfer and at least wait and see to find out what it will be like in September. We're hoping to move when our current lease is up in December, so the simplest solution would be to find a place in the area of the school we like. Failing that, a transfer is a possibility. Or we'll start looking at public school alternatives again.

Or maybe we'll actually like this school. But I feel badly for K, who has spent the past year making friends including a couple best friends, and now she's going to be in a completely different school from them.

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