Blog Challenge "100 posts in 100 days" Post #30
The last few weeks it seems like you can't pick up the paper without reading a headline about charter schools. The most recent Tulsa World article is probably my favorite one so far:
A study in contrasts: Most Tulsa County districts lose students while virtual school student numbers soar
I love the message from Websters principal, and I honestly believe that if more schools followed the same strategy, enrollment numbers wouldn't be such a concern.
What I don't understand is how TPS doesn't already understand how and why families are deciding to leave. It is all over Facebook and probably every other social media platform. All it would take is a few simple conversations with the parents of the kids who are leaving.
I digress, I will only speak for myself. We were desperate for a change, something different. A positive school experience. One where Chan didn't come home every day with tears in his eyes. Or scared to death of the trouble he would be in at home for something that happened at school, terrified to get on the bus because of the way some of the other kids treated him or completely and utterly defeated by the system as a whole.
I would love not to have a child in a public charter school. I would like for him to go back to Catoosa and hope to make that a reality as soon as possible. Deciding to transfer a child to public charter school, more specifically in our case, Epic is hard. It is far more work than public school. It requires a significant commitment from the student and the parents.
There is no blending in with curriculum specifically tailored to each student and their individual learning needs. Chandler has learned more this year than in previous years. He has become so resourceful and self-driven.
The downside is the lack of social interaction with his peers. Sure, we try to supplement as much as possible by signing him up for activities, taking him to extracurriculars, keeping him active in Taekwondo, etc. but it will never match what public schools have to offer.
I hope that our public school systems don't wait to implement strategies to bring some of the individual development opportunities that charter schools already offer. Most parents want what is best for their children. I know that I do and every day I work to make the best choices and decisions possible for my son. Somedays it feels more like choosing the lesser of two evils. Other days I just know that I've forfeited my entry into the mom of the year contest, but hey, we all do the best we can and hope that it is enough, that we have prepared our children with enough tools and a big enough toolbox for them to go out into the world and find success.