Journey to Kindergarten, Part 3

This is the third part of a series documenting the steps one family is taking to prepare for their son’s entrance into kindergarten next year. Read Part 1 here and Part 2 here.

by Gail Z.

20160406_080252Since my last post, there have been some new developments in our family’s journey to kindergarten.

Back in early March, I made a call to our neighborhood school. Since, as far as I knew, this school did not schedule open houses or group tours for prospective parents, I wanted to set up an appointment to tour the school. I briefly explained to the secretary who answered the phone that I’d be registering my child for kindergarten and would like to come in for a visit. She didn’t sound at all surprised, which actually surprised me, and gave me the feeling that school visits (even to one’s neighborhood school) are a normal thing. She said the principal would call me back (which was also surprising—I would have direct access to the principal?), but that it might be a couple of days. “No problem,” I said. Having taught elementary school, I know how it is.

I figured I’d get a call back that next morning, but it didn’t happen. Each day that passed, I got excited about seeing my son’s potential school, and held out hope that I was somewhere on the principal’s priority list. But apparently, I wasn’t.

After a week had passed, I thought to myself, I’ll give it more time. But almost in the same moment, I thought, she’s not going to call me back.

So I decided to try again.

I spoke to a secretary—the same one, I’m pretty sure—and she said they had been very busy, and that state testing was in progress. In fact, that was the reason that I hadn’t heard anything. The secretary assured me that she would pass along my name and number again. The call ended with my saying, “I understand. Thank you.”

But something didn’t sit right with me when I hung up. I thought about it for a bit, and it occurred to me that maybe I could enroll my son at his neighborhood school (as required by PGCPS) and potentially submit a transfer request before the school year even begins in August. And if that transfer request is accepted, maybe I could send him to that other school— the same one that his classmates from preschool attend—if that’s what we choose.

I spoke to my husband about it, and he thinks it’s a great idea to pursue the option of two possible schools. I decided to keep trying to pay a visit to our assigned neighborhood school, and in the meantime set up a visit to the school on the other side of our community.

Since then, the calls to my neighborhood school have still been unanswered. I tried three times and left three messages. Unfortunately, the third time wasn’t the charm.

Thankfully, I did hear back from the school on the other side of our neighborhood—the school where many of my son’s former classmates attend. We’ve been holding out hope that this school—a TAG school—is an option for us. We think that maybe, just maybe, requesting a transfer will help us get there if that’s what we want for our son.

Read Part 4 of the series here.

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