Reading Mission Possible caused me to reflect how I became involved with first one charter school and then another, and the steps I’ve taken to ensure my children the best education I can give them. Before moving to Arizona, my kids went to the local school, I volunteered in the classroom because I liked seeing the teacher in action, so I could reinforce the lessons and language at home. My children all did well enough.
In Arizona, I quickly learned our school district wasn’t great. I let my kiddos try the local elementary school and I got involved the only way I knew, volunteering in the classroom and on the parent teacher committee. The administration’s philosophy was to aim low, and being involved wasn’t doing anything to help my children gain a good education. Their teachers spent days trying to gain control of their class and when they did teach, it was to those furthest behind. One daughter started the school year reading at fourth grade level and by the end of the year was down to a third grade level.
My friends gave me a crash coarse on charter schools and invited me to work with them to bring a good one to our area. After 1 1/2 years of the district school, I pulled my children out and placed them in a charter school that lacked some important amenities – like a library, a playground, and a lunch area. But at least the teachers cared about my children and their education, and they listened to my concerns and did their best to challenge my children. That over eight years ago; my younger children have solely attended charter schools. Are the charter schools perfect? Not by a long shot, but they are the best alternative.
While it makes me sad that the local district schools aren’t providing what they should, I’m grateful that I was forced to get more involved with my children’s education. I’m grateful to have a better understanding of the curriculum they are being taught and how important my role is to their education. Not only do my children benefit, but I’m a better person for this struggle. See, kids aren’t the only one’s who benefit from rigor! (It’s one of the secrets of the Success Academy talked about in Mission Possible.)
There’s only a couple of days left to enter my giveaway for your own copy of Mission Possible!
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