I was in a cleaning mood this weekend. The kind where you can’t stop or else you know you won’t get started again. I cleaned, sorted and folded all weekend. Saturday night the girls had their first indoor soccer game. I never would have thought indoor and outdoor soccer would have been so different. It will take a while for the team to adjust to the walls and not having any real out-of-bounds area. They had a blast playing. Today, I did some cleaning outside and noticed my rosebush is blooming again!
On a separate subject, the first person got in line at Fairview Elementary for enrollment. You can’t actually enroll your child until November 14th at midnight. That means this year people are camping out for 13 days!!!! Fairview German Language school is one of the best magnet schools that the Cincinnati Public School System offers. It is located in Clifton and there is no tuition to attend. Finding a good, inner city school with great teachers and active parents has caused extreme competition. We knew when we started looking at schools that we wanted to send our kids here. The reasons: it is in our neighborhood, has excellent ratings and teaches a foreign language (German) from K-6th grade. We saved up vacation and camped out for three days to get Isabella enrolled. I stayed in line during the day, Ben slept in a tent at night. (If you leave your spot for longer than a bathroom break, you lose your place in line.) For us it was worth it. We had no Plan B, this was the school for us. Waiting in line was a guarantee that Isabella and any future children would get to attend a good school (once one child is in their siblings get priority registration when it is time for them to start school). Waiting in line also allowed us to form a bond with other parents. We laughed and joked and held each other’s spots for breaks. We grumbled about the occasional downpour and the cold, but we did it mainly with a smile.
Driving past the tents this weekend caused mixed feelings. We sympathize for the people out in the cold, damp air (especially since they will be out their for a lot longer than we were) but it also makes us smile because dedication like this is what makes Fairview so good. The willingness for parents to do what they feel is best for their child’s education. The willingness for neighbors, grandparents, friends, co-workers and others to help these children by standing in line during the day and camping out at night, to hold that one spot guaranteed to get them on the list. This year there are less spots available, hence the earlier than normal line forming. A lot of people have complained about the lines, that it is a flawed system, that it is not fair to ask this kind of commitment from people. I’m not very sympathetic to these comments. Anyone can hold your place in line, you could pay a different stranger everyday to hold your spot – someone just has to be there to represent your child. We camped out, we had Isabella and a toddler at the time, we saved all of our vacation from work in order to do this. People camp out all the time for free food, the newest electronics, to be the first in the door during shopping season, for concert tickets, movies and sporting events – this is for education, for us it was a question of priorities.