I don’t get the dress thing. I just don’t. I’ve tried over and over to read about it but it’s boring and I don’t understand it. I consider myself a somewhat intelligent person, but the amount of work my brain has to put into trying to understand the science behind it just. isn’t. worth. it.
However I can relate.
17 school tours and 12 submitted applications later, I think I’m more confused than ever about where I want to send my son to kindergarten, which makes me feel like I’m staring at my very own blue/black dress (which is totally white/gold, by the way) and that MY ENTIRE LIFE HAS BEEN A LIE.
Let’s take a quick moment to recap on The Great Love Affair of 2014/15 aka The Great Kindergarten Search:
Option 1: LAUSD progressive school route (Independent Charter):
I really fell in
love deep like with the Independent Charter Schools that are in our area. They are a bit more progressive and hands-on in their teaching methods, which I totally support. Problem is:
- I have absolutely no control over our enrollment because spaces are given out on a lottery basis.
- Most of them are a bit of a drive from our house.
Option 2: Move to a good neighborhood, and stick with the LAUSD traditional school route (most are Affiliated Charters):
I’m starting to fall in
love deep like with the idea of moving to a larger house in a neighborhood where my littles can get on a “track”, meaning they would go to elementary school in their neighborhood (with even a chance of being able to walk to school!), go to middle school with those same kids, and then go to high school with those same kids as well. That means they would really experience a community, where they would do activities and play sports with everyone in their community. And it means a lot less LA traffic to deal with which makes me so giddy I want to pee myself. Problem is:
- I would have to let go of wanting more progressive and hands-on teaching methods.
- The commute would increase for Mac Daddy, who already has long, crazy hours on top of a long, crazy commute.
- We would need to scramble and sell our house, buy a new one, and move all in the next 5 months.
But Ladies and Gentlemen, last night Mac Daddy threw a curve ball. It was almost as good as Mayor Garcetti’s “First Pitch” at D-Bop’s Little League Opening Ceremonies last weekend (true story). So introducing:
Option 3: What about moving to Agoura/Calabasas?
Agoura/Calabasas = Las Virgenes Unified School District = I HAVE NOT TOURED THOSE SCHOOLS.
After Mac Daddy said it he kind of laughed. “What if after all these school tours you’ve been on we don’t even choose one of those schools?”
I responded, “Hahaha, that would be funny.”
“Heeheehee. Totally funny.”
Sniffle. Sniffle. Then, “OHMYGODIHAVEPUTSOMANYHOURSINTOALLTHISGODDAMNLAUSDSCHOOLRESEARCH!!!!!!!!!”
(wiping frustration tears away) Anyway, what would that look like?
After looking at a couple of websites for schools in LVUSD, I might have a new crush. Most schools are traditional in their teaching approach, but seem to also incorporate a lot of the programs that impressed me about the progressive schools. I really don’t even feel like I would need to tour these schools—they all look pretty amazing and like they have ample resources.
(Which they should considering LVUSD has a total of 16 schools while poor LAUSD has a total of 658 schools. ?! )
But moving to Calabasas has its own problems:
- The commute would really increase for Mac Daddy, and I feel very protective over his time, especially when it takes away from seeing our littles.
- Am I ready to say good-bye to LA? After living here for 17 years I’ve kind of grown to love this city. I love the culture and the diversity, and if we move to the other side of the hill, a lot of that would go away.
So while the rest of the world stares at a blue/black, white/gold dress online for hours at a time, I instead spend my free time obsessing over houses on Redfin and researching the hell out of schools…which pretty much feels like staring at a blue/black, white/gold dress online for hours at a time.
And, really, does ANY of it matter?
Don’t worry, I’m not getting too philosophical and questioning the meaning of life here, but if a school has a fresh coat of paint or a large grassy field or an extra hands-on project, do I really deep down believe that is going to strongly impact my child?
The answer is no. I believe a “good school” is a “good school” because of the community of teachers, students and parents, and I have seen a lot of these “good schools” on most of my tours…probably all but one.
I know that whatever color combination my dress ends up being, it will be exactly how I was meant to see it…but with kindergarten now 5 MONTHS AWAY (?!) I’m ready to stop researching the science behind it all and start discovering THE TRUTH.
(And I also want to know: how in the HELL did Taylor Swift see blue/black???).