TOPIC ONE: How NOT to Choose a School
I am feeling angst because a very close family member disapproves of the school where I am sending my son. From what I gathered of the conversation, I should be sending him to a school full of Asian or Indian kids, because their performance is so much better than that of American children. I love our school because it is diverse, the teachers are kind, and my kid is happy there. Are these the right reasons? Also we don’t want to move to a fancy neighborhood so my son can go to school with a bunch of kids raised by tiger moms. No offense if you are a tiger mom, but I have sat next to you at little league games and you guys really stress me out.
|This shirt is for tiger moms to wear as a warning to others. Now people won't have to give up a perfectly good seat on the bleachers to avoid you when you start screaming at your kids.|
In my defense, I stated that our selection of neighborhood and school was carefully thought out and I would appreciate her not treating our educational choices as haphazard decisions. However, in retrospect, we did choose our house because the lot has nice trees. Also, we drove by the elementary school down the road and didn’t see any police tape, chalk outlines, or obvious drug trafficking, so we assumed everything would be okay. Apparently, it is far from okay. According to the school ranking system, our school is only RECOGNIZED. A really good school would be EXEMPLARY. Even though we are still one notch above those poor souls who are only ACCEPTABLE, it was a rookie mistake to choose a house because it has nice trees.
|This shirt is for those of you who are recognized. You worked hard to achieve this, and it would be a shame for people to not recognize that you are recognized.|
|This shirt is for those of you who are acceptable. If you are not acceptable, wearing the shirt might help you out for a while, but I can’t guarantee how long the illusion will be maintained.|
Personally, I work very hard to achieve ACCEPTABLE in my own life, and it is not as easy as one might think. Maybe it is not the school my son goes to, or the house that we live in. It could very well be me that is lacking in what it takes to be RECOGNIZED or EXEMPLARY. I asked my son when he was two years old if he wanted to be a child genius, and he said ‘no.’ Maybe I should have pushed harder, but that ship has sailed. Now he is like every other slacker American kid playing with his Nintendo DS instead of learning to play the viola. This is not because of the educational system. It is because of me. There it is everyone… it is not the fault of the wonderful teachers at my son’s school, it is not the rating system, the problem is me. He could have cured cancer if I didn’t buy him Super Mario Cart.
And NO… if you are EXEMPLARY, you do NOT get a damn shirt. Don’t even ask.