Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Go Black Raiders

Well, the decision's been made. Sioux City rejected our request to be released for open enrollment because we were past the deadline. So, the girls are going to Sioux City schools this fall: Eastin full-time at Sunnyside Elementary, and Leslie for two morning classes at East Middle School (then homeschooled the rest of the day). Then the next year, Leslie will go to East High full-time. Home of the Black Raiders. School colors are orange and black. My old Creative Memories customers will appreciate the irony of that.

I was disappointed. Actually, when I got the call, I felt like I'd been kicked in the gut. But I'm OK, now. None of them are bad schools. They'll be fine.

Next week, we have to do three mornings of standardized testing to satisfy our requirements to the state of Iowa for homeschooling. The girls are nervous, because they've never done anything like this before. I'm not nervous, but I'm anxious to see how they do, just for my own curiosity. Unfortunately, the lady in charge of the testing told me they've changed procedures this year and it may take until June to get the results in. How ridiculous! Whatever.

I remember how moms in our Friday School group would come up to me (because I'm a former teacher) and talk to me about how their kids were doing -- am I covering enough? Should I be worried about their progress? I always reassured them they were doing fine. Barring unusual learning disabilities or such, almost any parent who cares that much about their kids' education and who has knowledge of and access to the plethora of homeschooling resources available is going to do fine -- at least, good enough.

Our problem as homeschooling parents is we insist on perfection, on getting the exact right curriculum, the exact right schedule, the exact right everything. Not that we should settle for less than the best we can do. Cindy, my first homeschooling friend in Springfield, used to remind us that when God calls us to do something, he calls us to excellence and not to mediocrity.

On the other hand, excellence does not require perfection. I had Creative Memories customers who would spend a couple hours at a workshop playing around with their pictures, different papers, different stickers, different arrangements, etc. etc. . . trying to find the perfect layout -- for one page. And then they went home with a still-mostly-empty album and a box still full of photos to be inserted. "Done is better than perfect," I told them. Sometimes good enough is truly good enough.

I'm not worried about how my girls' test results come out next week, because I know I've done my best -- and good enough is good enough. I'm not worried about which schools they go to next year -- because good enough is good enough. So, I'll start looking for orange clothes I can live with (gotta show school spirit). Go Black Raiders. Go orange and black. (Orange. Ugh.)


Meredith said...

East High??? As in the high school from High School Musical?? Leslie must be ecstatic!

GJK said...

Yes, that fun detail has been lost on none of us! :)

Anonymous said...

East High!!At least the colors are not red and white-the HSM forever encroaching :)

GJK said...

Actually, I'd really prefer red and white! And I'd prefer they were Wildcats . . I'm not even sure what a "Black Raider" is supposed to be ..

Julie W. said...

In Newton we are black and gold. I tend to wear black to most events. I must say though that orange would go really good with your hair color! Will they (or you and Keith) let Leslie try out for plays, music, sports whatever her interest is if she is part time? Just curious, being involved is something I think is important.