Tonight is back to school night for Maeve. She's a big first grader and in a new classroom. The classroom isn't new for me--it was Sophia's classroom for 3 years with first the useless teacher who had no business being there (inherited from the preschool we grew out of), and then two wonderful years with Miss Anne, who is about to be Maeve's teacher, along with Miss Bridget, her assistant.
I'll be teaching art in there, and in Sophia's room, and in one of the other 1st-3rd grade rooms. And field trip chaperone. And who knows what else? I had a meeting with the head of school last week and we talked about what I was getting myself into (3 hours of volunteer teaching, plus prep work and so forth) and I feel like he sees me, you know? In a way that perhaps I wasn't seen before.
The school isn't new anymore, and we've reached a long period of growing time, as we say in the Atrium. Yes, we're moving next year, but most of what we are is established. We can't blame naivete for our mistakes. We can't pretend to be a small spirited community school. It's like when I realized I was an oblate. I wasn't a novice anymore. I wasn't searching, I wasn't trying out, I wasn't proving myself. I was done with that phase. And now they are, too. This is our 4th year as a charter school and 5th year as a viable start-up grade school. And frankly, we have a lot to work on.
Not the software. Not the stuff that happens in the classrooms, not the teachers and students and curriculum and all the stuff "where the rubber meets the road." But on our "why can't we find our rear ends with both hands" hardware end of things. The development/finance/corporate side of the school, the side that must always be tamed down and forced to an espalier frame. It cannot be allowed to get in the way of what's happening in the courtyard, to continue the analogy. It must support and remain in the background.
I fear that things are getting out of hand.
And I'm just a parent. But I'm a loud parent and I'm waiting for my moment.
But back to back to school night. We're all looking forward to it. Maeve is getting so big. She has a loose tooth finally. Sophia doesn't get to go to back to school night because she's in the same classroom as last year (the 4th-6th grade, as a 5th grader). So she already knows the song and dance.
So there. That's what's bugging me in a nutshell.