Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The Rant

Now I have a little something to get off my chest and those of you who might not know me by now might want to stop reading. My hubby worries I come across bitter and ugly when I start on one of my rants. But I'm thinking some of you may identify so I'm going to go ahead and risk sounding like a not so nice person.

I mentioned how wonderful my children's teachers are because they are but I'm not so happy with the administration. And I used to be an administrator so I know it's a tough job, but right now I really don't care. At my children's school once a semester a yellow bus drives up to the school, loads up a select group of kids and heads into town to the "Jump N Jive" where they bounce and jump and have all sorts of fun for a few hours. Now you may ask what have these amazing children done, discovered a cure for the hiccups, gone a whole semester without getting into trouble, never forgot their homework, maybe made good, no, no silly they didn't miss a single day of school. Oh and by a single day I mean they were there from at least 10:00 on or they were there until at least ten in the morning, hence being counted present. Because really smart parents ( I am not one of them) know the "system". I am proud of these kids who never missed school, but more than that I am so happy they were never sick, being dragged back and forth to doctors, being stuck with needles, laying in bed running high temperatures with parents worriedly watching over them. They deserve to celebrate. Here's my gripe and you know I had one: what about the children who for whatever reason find themselves sick and unable to go to school, what about the parent's who stick hard to the rule of DO NOT LET YOUR CHILD RETURN TO SCHOOL UNTIL THEY HAVE BEEN FEVER FREE FOR 24 HOURS. That's twenty-four hours people, not oh the last time they had a fever was yesterday at 5:00pm so they can go to school today. They might be able to, but in the meantime they are spreading germs to kids who's immune system might not be as strong as theirs. Did I tell you my little Soph got RSV and pneumonia when she was 2 years old because not one but two parents thought it was okay to send their kids to school with RSV because well, they needed to go to work or they had a luncheon date?!! I hope I'm not sounding unsympathetic to the plight of working parents, I understand, I had a boss threaten me on several occasions that I couldn't miss any more work to stay home with my sick kids. It's a terrible place to be, I'm sorry.

Two more things I must mention, even though I've lost most of you by now because of my ranting, and I am sorry. Prize patrol, this group comes around with little prizes every grading period to give out prizes for kids who haven't missed school for that period. My little Soph wanted with every fiber of her being to just one time get a prize, to not miss school. So much so that even when she was running a temp of 103 she cried because she knew she was not going to get a prize. It breaks a mommas heart I'm telling you.

And now after running around to doctors, holding a sobbing child in your lap as she gets poked and pricked, rocking her as she wakes up from surgery and is mad at the world, sneaking into her bed at night to make sure she is still breathing or watching as she struggles to take that next breath, rejoicing as her health seems to be on the upturn and thanking God every step of the way, we get a letter telling us our children's absences are EXCESSIVE, even under the extenuating circumstances and they will be put before a review board to see if they can advance in grade. The cause of concern is gaps in learning. You know this is a bunch of hooey when one child tests off the charts in almost every area or scores perfectly and the other despite her illnesses has climbed to the middle to upper middle of her class and is above all levels on her testing. No, no it's not about the money they lose when your child is not at school, since the state pays them per daily attendance, it's about the gaps in learning really, really...

Oh, and their was a veiled threat of "next year your child's absences will be monitored very closely to ensure their success!" I welcome them into my home to change dirty bed linens, give meds in the middle of the night, etc. is this closely enough?

I must go lay down now....ranting is exhuasting!


The Fritz Facts said...

No need to apologize at all. Rants about schools are standard and needed.

Where to begin. Yes, it is great that they reward the children that haven't missed a day of school. Wonderful. But what happened to giving a certificate at the end of the school year? Did that somehow become not as cool. I don't get that to begin with.

I don't see how a school can say they are going to have things "monitered closely" when they aren't even monitoring when the sick kids come in with illness that should be home. I too am a strict follower of the rules when it comes to illness, and it drives me nuts when people send their obviously ill children to school. The lack of concern for their child and others drives me nuts.

At my daughters school, if a child that was sent home the day before with pink eye (or fever etc) comes to school the very next day they are sent to the office and must wait in the nurses office for a parent to pick them up, after the parent meets with the principal and bascially get reamed out.

That is what schools should be doing. I would much rather have a school that follows the rules instead of a sick kid every time I turn around because someone in her class came to school with something.

I feel you on this one! You are more than right!!!

Tanya said...

Wow. I would be more than a little perterbed about that. I have always - even when I was a kid! - hated the attendance awards. They're not fair and never sympathetic. Furthermore, they mean nothing! Who cares if you show up every day if you're not going to perform well? Anyway, just wanted to let you know I feel you. Were I in your shoes, I might "rant" to the school board myself. :)

Kara said...

Thank you both! It's nice to know I'm not the only one that feels this way:)

kpottlitzer said...

#1 stop apologizing! women are not wilting,delicate flowers that should be expected to sit quietly in corners full of emotion without expression. you're thoughts and feelings are completely understandable and normal. not ranting would cause me concern!
#2 it's unfortunate that those who follow the "system" are often times punished, along with those who don't.
#3 i just noticed a freaking huge giant dying roach about two feet away from me - argghhhhh!!!


kpottlitzer said...

ok, i'm back roach crisis over. now, i sound like a created a woman's rights rant on top of your rant :)!

the attendance thing really makes me angry. it's ridiculous. i think you should type a letter for the administration, higher ups, whoever, that explains the situation like you did in your post.

Smockity Frocks said...

I hope you let the school know how you feel. Even if nothing changes, they need to know that you don't appreciate pressure being applied to you to bring a SICK child to school! (You are right about the funding. It's all about the moo-lah.)

And by the way, it has always made me mad when people take their sick children to church, parties, etc. Last week, a boy with mono came to church, even Sunday school! Aaaargh! That's all I need! 7 children with mono!

Kara said...

Mono? That is so contagious, urghh, no you don't need 7 little patients!! Kim, I know women sometimes feel the need to apologize for strong convictions, it's a bad habit:) WB talked to the superintendent and the principal was supposed to call but never has. We will be meeting with her even if it is the middle of the summer!!