Thursday, February 28, 2013

School Changes - Working Mom Guilt

This year has been a struggle for me personally with J's school. 

Let me be clear...

I LOVE his school.  I LOVE how he has grown & developed both maturity & academically.

That said...

I have not been overwhelming thrilled with his teacher.  Jacob has grown and developed, which is what has kept Mr. M & I from voicing our unhappiness.  I've tried really hard to just keep following up with her in hopes of building a relationship that would open the lines of communication that I grew to expect during J's time with Young Scholars. 

This week we learned, she is resigning effective Friday.

A new teacher, a teacher J knows through before and after school care.  A teacher who knows how to help redirect Jacob when needed.  One who has 5 years prior teaching joining FRA.  One who is energetic and excited about being with these kiddos.

We are wishing Mrs. K well.  We will pray that she gets the support she needs that played such a huge part in her decision to leave mid-year.

And with a huge hug, lots of hope, and excitement - we welcome Mrs. M to J's classroom.  I'm excited to see what the remainder of the year will be.  :-)

This all said, this situation created the opportunity for me to learn what I didn't know.  To learn what I, as a working mom, have missed.  Miss Cheryl has been, to an extent, whispering in my ear.  But not having an education background, I have not fully understood.  My strength is math, analysis, trends.  Writing, reading, etc?  Yeah, not so much a strength.  I love to read.  I love to write, or I wouldn't have a blog.  But being good at it - not really.

Miss Cheryl has brought to my attention, how J, while being asked to learn how to spell words with ch, oo, ending in e, he was not been taught the basic rules.  The silence of the "e" creating the long "i" in *fine*. 

On my way into work today, I spoke with another mom.  There are only 10 kiddos in class.  I only know a few moms, as I do my drop off at 7 (okay 720) - school starts at 830.  Miss Cheryl generally does pick up at 3.  Daddy has met a few moms, but he is less likely to chat with them as he is to duck in grab J & run out the door.  :) 

And if I do pickup, it is 545'ish (closes at 6). 

It's my fault, by I have not cultivated the relationships to have the door opened and understand when there is a potential for issues in his class that I should otherwise know.

Today, I learned how that is impacting J.  I didn't know.  I didn't have those doors open.  But now they are.  My concerns I've been expressing to family that have been dismissed as my being an overbearing mom, were in fact valid.  AND other mom's have felt the same way.  Mom's who have had older children go through JK at FRA, who knew what to expect AND have realized - the expectations where NOT being met.  Granted, Mrs. K has had issues, and for that reason alone - I'm glad I did not add to it by complaining.  But I feel so much better knowing that my gut was right. 

As a working mom, it is so hard to balance motherhood, my job, childcare, marriage.  I have to delegate.  I have to rely on those who are assigned tasks to be following through at the level of excellence I would give to the tasks I have in front of me. 

I'm in by no means perfect.  And I ABSOLUTELY have my moments of Mommy Fail.  I'm human.  I understand. 

And that's why I have working mom guilt right now.  I know I failed my kiddo by not being on top of it earlier. 

That said... Stepping back.  Recognizing he is only in 4 year old preschool.  If I was going to need to learn this - now is the best time.  This was a growing moment for me.  He may not have learned those basics, but he is learning more new words every day.  He is getting so much closer to reading books with me, as opposed to me reading at him. 

From now on, I am going to make a bigger effort to interact with Mom's in his classes.  I'm going to make the time to know what I need to know.  I'm not going to just phone in the minimal requirements.  No one person (besides Mr. M) is as or more concerned about J's development than me. 

We are blessed in the support we have.  We are so blessed by Miss Cheryl's background giving us supplemental support to the wonderful basis of FRA.  We are blessed by family who gifts Jacob books, learning exercises and games.  He absorbs all of this. 

We are so blessed.  Mommy just needs to step up her balancing skills... This way we can better maximize our blessings.

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