New School

Have any of you changed your kids’ school?

We made the decision to change earlier this year and the kids have just started at their new school.

We were reasonably happy at our little school with 100 kids but the school was getting too small, which in the end meant that 2 of our girls would be sharing a classroom for much of the next five years. That, plus the other things on our list, made us decide it was time to change.

Our school didn’t see it coming. Our principal and the teachers in the school were pretty gutted. Still – we really didn’t want two of our girls to be in a class together. They already share rooms, clothes, space, and friends; there is already enough competition – it was time for them to have their own story.

My husband and I visited the other local schools and there was only one that fit our needs: the one next door to the other school.  We spent a couple of months with the secret – trying to figure out a way to get the kids on board. Mostly there was “acceptance” though the reality was only something they’d really experience this fall. They had a couple of test runs in the mornings before the summer break and all seemed okay.

I have to say that despite not liking our decision, the school gave the kids a proper good-bye and a lot of tears were shed – change has never been easy for me so I may have shed the most.

And now we are back from an idyllic summer in Canada. We had a week to get over jetlag and re-adapt to life in Holland. Then came the first day of school.  The first day went pretty well – everyone was a bit nervous and excited. Then came Tuesday… My girls all cried, my son had a lousy day. Wednesday, a bit better…



Now two weeks and a bit in and my oldest daughter seems to be settling in pretty well – her social life is blooming and she likes her teachers. She also can’t stop doing cartwheels, but I digress… My second daughter is having a bit of trouble with all of the newness – she’s just started grade one – a big change from Kindergarten, but she got through today without a tear, so progress. My youngest daughter has been lucky – she has teachers that love to hug and has had a number of birthday parties in the classroom, each bringing with it a pile of cookies or cupcakes – so she’s pretty happy. She’s made a new best friend called Lianne, my name… she has the most beautiful curly blond hair, which she talks about all the time. I love that for her.

Then there’s my son and that’s a whole other story. He’s now in grade four – seems to have forgotten that his last couple of years at our old school weren’t really great for him and refuses to accept our decision. Today he left without eating breakfast out of protest, which is something no one has ever done. He looks for all that is not good, hasn’t shared a positive word with me in weeks. He knows a number of the kids; in fact, a couple were already good friends. Every day after school, I can feel the weight he is carrying on his shoulders. There are more resources in the school, younger teachers, workshops, some really great things. He’s just not interested. He doesn’t even want to try. I feel guilty, hate seeing him down in the dumps but despite this – I’m sure we’ve made the right decision for our family.

I just wish wish wish, with all my heart, that he would see it that way…

It’s hard being a parent.

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