Need help deciding on school -- FAST! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 07-25-2003, 03:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We are moving to a new state and I am having such a hard time deciding where to send my almost 4 yo dd to school. There is a Montessori school that goes to Kindergarten that is 20 mins. away. It is nice, but they seem to put a lot of emphasis on how advanced academically their "graduates" are. I happened to go and visit the Waldorf school nearest to me and fell in love with the school. I know my dd would thrive there. She is so imaginative and play-oriented, it would be a wonderful enviornment for her to learn in. Problem - it is 40-45 mins. away. That's a long drive. But I keep telling myself that it would be worth it for her. More than the commute being far, I worry that if g-d forbid something should happen that I need to be there it is so far! I can't help but think that her spirit may be broken by sending her to a Montessori program even though I agree with many ideas of Montessori method. Besides, I'd have to switch her in a few years anyway. All other schools nearer to us are either church based (I'm not Christian) or daycare based. I guess I have it in my head how great the Waldorf school would be that I feel anything else is cheating my dd!

I know it seems that I am making way too much of a big deal over this for a 4 yo, but I have to sign her up for something fast (by this week!)

Any words of wisdom?

hilary
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#2 of 9 Old 07-25-2003, 04:13 PM
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I'm sending my daughter to a Waldorf-type school this year, and I'm excited!

Go for your gut! Is there any possibility of moving closer?
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#3 of 9 Old 07-25-2003, 06:23 PM
 
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I grew up in Maryland and went to the Washington Waldorf School...don't know if that's the school you're looking at, or the Baltimore one. I can promise you that, if it's WWS, you can trust that they will be loving, caring, and do all that they can for your DD, should an emergency arise -- and until you could arrive.

Also, folks head to that school, and, I know, the Baltimore one, from far and wide, so there's a very good chance you could set up a carpool so the driving would not wear you out every day. I lived a half hour away from school and that just seemed normal to me -- that's how long you travel to get to school....it becomes routine.

Good luck with your choice! Write more questions about the specific school if you have them.

be well,
megin

Mommy to an amazing 8 year old, wife to an inspiring principal, and welcoming Wylie Grace! Our July 4th babe!
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#4 of 9 Old 07-26-2003, 12:09 AM
 
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I drive 40 minutes every day of the week to pick up my ds (5) at his Waldorf Kindergarten. Yes, it is worth it and the community can be helpful in carpooling also if you'd like to make that work. i think you definately must listen to your "Heart" ---It's all so worth it! Ps: his dad takes him in.
Laura
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#5 of 9 Old 07-26-2003, 10:52 AM
 
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How often do we get to "fall in love" with something-- a situation that we can be passionate about and throw ourselves into? Go for it, your message is clear that it is where your heart lies. With a big move and all the changes that go with it, it will be wonderful to have a situation for your child that feels so right. You can always change your mind later, right?

 
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#6 of 9 Old 07-27-2003, 06:44 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all so much!

I read all your posts with my dh sitting next to me. He had previously said "it doesn't matter to me" and I think he was leaning on whatever is closer, but after reading such warm and wonderful support he said he thought we should go for the Waldorf. It means a lot to me to have him make the descion with me.

Also it seemed I was missing really what mattered --- what my heart told me and now that you all have reminded me of that it does not seem like a choice at all! A great weight has been lifted for sure! We will meet the challenges as they come and go from there...

megincl- actually we are moving from Baltimore to Pa. but this Waldorf also has people from far and wide going there as well.

mamajulie - we can't move closer because of my dh's work although who knows what will happen in the future. I would love to move closer - the town the school is in is so great!

lauraess- my dh will be able to take her in as well, at the very least watch my 4 month old so he doesn't have to spend so much time in his carseat.

Thanks again - it really touched my heart in a way I didn't think a message board could
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#7 of 9 Old 07-27-2003, 08:42 PM
 
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What part of PA are you moving to?
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#8 of 9 Old 07-27-2003, 08:49 PM
 
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I guess my thought would be...then all of her friends are 45 mins. away.
Dh and I have this discussion a lot; ie. should the kids go to my school or the neighborhood school. How nice for them to have friends close to home.

Will the drive be worse in the winter; ie. icy roads, snowstorms?

Really, the teacher's philosophy is more important than that of the school. Anyway you can talk to her or any of her past parents?
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#9 of 9 Old 08-19-2003, 01:09 PM
 
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Hi - I know that you have already made your choice, since I am chiming in late, but I wanted to add something anyway. I agree with everyone else, follow your heart and your instincts. We had a similar problem for our DD for Kindergarten for this year.

Send her to public school for 2 hours a day then day care again or send her 45 minutes away with another friend from town to a great Jewish School. We opted for the 2nd choice. She went to see her new school and was so excited. We have made it out to be even better by sending DS also (almost 2) to the same schools younger program and the other family is also sending their 2 year old. So, we are going to car pool with this family (all 4 kids). My mom is doing after school care for me until I get home from work. She has also offered to watch the other families new baby while they do their part of car pooling so the baby doesn't have to sit in the car. She is a life saver.

It is a hard decision to make - a long drive and being so far away if there is a problem. But these are the things we as parents do for our kids to make them better little people and get them wonderful educations. Way the options and follow your heart - we are. Good luck. Let me know how it is going.
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