Well, the kids took the news of their upcoming adventures in public school really well. Justine is excited, or course. So excited in fact that she's picked out her lunch box, backpack and first day of school outfit.
The others have only attempted to punish me intermittently.
I am not too worried about Justine and Jaiden. They will be just fine.
Jameson is what Jameson is. I'm going to have to give that up to God. I have no idea how she's going to be expected to integrate into a normal 5th grade class next year with just an hour of ESL help every day. She doesn't really need the ESL. Her problems go way beyond English being a second language. Realistically, she should be in 2nd grade.
I am calling this week to make an appointment to meet with the ESL director at Harrison (a different school and different ESL teacher than the last ESL fiasco we had) to get some insight into and give insight into what's best for Jameson.
I think Jack will be OK. He's a smart kid. It's going to be great for him to realize that he's going to have to be more responsible for his actions and homework, but really I'm happy for this.
I am worried about Josh. He's very good at pretending to know what's going on. He's working on a 6th grade test prep book and is completely and utterly lost. Once again, I'm going to just let go of it. He should be going in to the 8th grade next year, but is realistically more like at a 4th grade level.
I am going to meet with both the regular counselor at the south side regular school as well as the north side ESL school. A part of me just really doesn't want him at that school on the north side. He wants to be with his friends and his brother close to home. We need to figure out what the best thing will be for him.
I wish I had known that "catching" Josh and Jameson up to grade level was never really a realistic goal; I think I wouldn't be as nervous and disappointed now. There are some things you cannot change. I know I am naive sometimes, but I am just now realizing that teaching English as a second language to a learning disabled child with attachment issues and parenting 5 other children was way more than I could handle. It has changed my perspective on a lot of things, specifically myself.
And I am going to have to work through the after effects for myself and Jameson. Our relationship is strained at best. We need a break from one another. She performs much better for other people, and loves the attention from strangers. I think public school will give her the opportunity to get those "warm fuzzies" from someone else because my "warm fuzzies" are all used up.
I have run myself into the ground over this, but I know I need to realize that when they arrived here 2 years ago, they had minimal English skills, and Jameson didn't even test at a Kindergarten level; Josh was at a 1st grade level. The perfectionist in me says they should be totally caught up by now, but the realist in me has to be content that they are where they are. I must remember that we have had some really wonderful times homeschooling over the last 2 years.
I softened the blow of upcoming public school attendance with the news that they are all also going to summer school at public school. I figured this would be a good time for them to kinda figure things out as well as figure out grade levels etc.
Needless to say, they weren't pleased. And I'm OK with that.