Today began week two of the exhausting event known as "Tour My School." Parents line up in their best clothes and pressed smiles, and try and make a good impression on the principal so that their dear ones will be picked to play.
9 am. A school favored among the hipster parent crowd I will refer to as The Globe. Considered an alternative choice -- a small 300+ school for six grades that shares the same building with 3 other schools. The (s)mothers that show up? Dressed in black: tunics over jeans, boots, shorn heads, sneers laminated on their faces. The director (no principals here) recites her philosophy -- how children learn best by setting their own pace, creating their own challenges. How traditional schools make our little preciouses drink the "kool-aid." (Wait, I like kool-aid...)
Milk crates serve as storage bins. No library to speak of, hallways doubling as work spaces. Kids store their books in zip lock bags. Post-its for book marks. (Uh, can't you at least steal the free ones from Borders?)
10:45 am. I race to the one private school I am considering, arriving 30 minutes late. Parents sit in a circle listening to the director explain that anyone in a bitter custody battle should provide the school with appropriate paper work so that they know who to release their child to at the end of the day. 'Kay.
I see Marc Jacobs bags, Jimmy Choo pumps, one (s)mother murmurs to her coiffed hubbie how they can just pay the babysitter an extra $100 so she can stand in line on sign up day, and they don't have to hurry home early from their skiing holiday. Of course the classrooms are beautiful. Not just masking tape for art projects -- rainbow masking tape. A recent project? Making oil prints. These are the four-year-olds. Cost? $8000+ a year.
Tomorrow I actually have to choose my first choice for the rabbit's school NEXT September.
When you never fit in a box yourself, how do you know which one to check for your child? Should she go to school with Courtney Love's kidlet? Or Sarah Jessica Parker's?