Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Why am I sending my 3 year old to State-run Preschool???

For the past couple months, I have been doubting my decision to send Secundus to preschool.  I'm debating whether or not I should pull her out.

Why I enrolled her in the first place:
1. I wanted my poor middle child to have something fun to do that was all her own.
2. I thought it would be nice to have some time every afternoon with Secundus at school and Tertius napping to focus on Primus' kindergarten work.
3. Primus' preschool teachers, Ms. Lyn and Miss Lisa, last year were just awesome.  They had so many resources and ideas and ran a really great program.  I hoped Secundus could be in their class, or at least be in an equally awesome class.
4. She desperately needs speech therapy.  I thought it would be easier/faster to get her set up with therapy if she was already enrolled as a student in the district. 
5. Ms. Lyn had interacted with Secundus and gave a strong recommendation to enroll her.  She was sure that simply being in the preschool setting with the other children and the teachers, that it would improve her speech.

Well, she has been enrolled now for over 2 months and I am extremely disappointed. Secundus has FINALLY been evaluated for speech.  I am meeting with the therapist on Friday morning and then therapy is to officially begin. 

Besides that delay, I am also disappointed with the preschool class.  It is not what I had hoped.  First of all, Secundus is not in the same class as Primus was last year.  (That is a long story of budget cuts and poor management and poor planning on the part of the public school district.)  But I was still hopeful that the class would be good.  Wrong!  This teacher has a completely different personality than Lyn and Lisa.  And her assistant teacher has changed a couple times.  Last year Lyn and Lisa were a well-oiled machine that had worked together for a decade and were both sort of take-charge people.  This year, not so much.  It kind of feels chaotic in the classroom. 

Plus, and this takes the cake: her teacher has a lisp!  And it seems like half the kids in the class speak  Spanish (and both teachers will speak in Spanish to those children on occasion).  I'm not being discriminatory to people with speech impediments or to people who speak something other than English.  But the question is, "How is MY daughter going to benefit and improve her articulation when she is surrounded by that?"

Then there is another big reason I want to pull her out:  I absolutely LOATHE getting all the kids in and out of the car a million times everyday.  This is actually one big reason that I chose to homeschool in the first place; I don't like being a slave to the daily pick-ups and drop-offs.  When you add up our morning activity, plus pick-up and drop-off, I buckle or un-buckle the kids at least 10 times every weekday.

I could go on.  But long-story-short: the benefits are not outweighing the frustrations.  I think I will talk to the speech therapist about it when I see her on Friday and then decide.  I should be able to bring her in for an hour at a time a couple times a week or something like that.  If I do take her out, I may let her be until Christmas break.  She loves going to school so I don't want to just yank her out suddenly.  It seems like Christmas break would be a good opportunity to make changes.


  1. I feel your pain - my youngest has speech problems and we are rural, so I couldn't find anyone I could pay to do speech therapy with her. She is going two days a week and is supposed to have speech everyday she is there - doesn't happen, though. In her classroom, the head teacher had to do 8 weeks of student teaching at the beginning of the year, and I think she has to do 8 more in the spring, so she's had several teachers. At least 2/3 of the kids in her class speak Spanish in the home, and there are a lot of kids in speech so she usually has group speech therapy. I have to spend 5 hours per week in town doing school with my oldest at the library (it's a 20 min drive each way to town for 2 1/2 hours of preschool) and I don't know that I can keep doing this, particularly considering that she has been working on one letter sound all year so far, and isn't working on it in words yet, so far as I can tell. I also can't get the speech therapist to set up an appointment to talk with me, so I think I'll have to write a letter to her boss to get anything done. If mine didn't love going, I'd have pulled her out already.

  2. Oh, wow! That's rough! Good luck with everything!