About a week ago, we start getting ready for school to start. Pippi stomps her foot, telling me that she does not like school and says that she wants to just be with her family because school is boring.
I hear about the Spanish immersion program (from 2 different sources) in nearby elementary schools. I find out it's too late to apply. I am ticked.
Pippi finds out that one of her friends is doing the Spanish immersion program and asks if she can do it to. I feel frustrated, and say no because it's too late to apply.
The Warlock and I attend back to school night with Pippi. We meet her first-grade teacher to be. I grit my teeth through her presentation without even knowing that The Warlock is doing the same thing. Everything feels wrong.
I tell my friend who Pippi's new teacher is, and she says the same teacher was her daughter's teacher last year. She tells me not to worry and that nothing is set in stone.
On a whim, even though Pippi has already motorcycled home with the Warlock, I decide to go and visit her teacher from last year. She's alone in her room. We chat. She asks who Pippi's teacher is. I say the name, completely unaware of my misgivings being so obvious. She attempts to reassure: "Oh she's really nice. She's just quiet." I don't feel reassured. She begs me to tell her about it, so I lay it on her. I tell her how ticked I am that I didn't even know about the Spanish immersion program. She admits Pippi would have been a perfect fit. I tell her that Pippi doesn't want to go to school because she's bored. The teacher presents the option of promoting Pippi to second grade. The thought had never even ocurred to me.
As I walk home, I can't get the thought of second grade out of my head. Clearly the teacher she has is all wrong for her. When I arrive at home, the Warlock shares his impressions as well. We decide what we think we should do, and then we pray. Even the next day, we feel like this is the best option. I mull it over for the full day that I have, I even "teacher shop," trying to find a first grade teacher that I feel good about. And then I browse the web sites of the second grade teachers and I find the teacher I want for my daughter. Then I send the email to the principal. She gets back to me promptly, schedules Pippi to be assessed the minute she walks into the door of school this morning and magically, 45 minutes after walking into school, Pippi has been transformed into a second grader! (And without me even asking, she got the teacher I would have picked for her.)
So Pippi, that's how it went down dear girl. Some day you might curse me for putting you in a situation that will be challenging, but I want you to know that we were doing our best. You like to learn with the pack, and I'm afraid if you stay in first grade you will not like school because you will be bored. You might not be valedictorian or All-State Volleyball Champ because you will be a year younger, but this was what was right. Both Dad and I felt it and knew it, and your kindergarten teacher knew it, too. We all adore you.