Bragging Rights

I’ve had a lot of ups and downs lately. Seems like more downs than ups but this is about an up.
Grace, the oldest, is in a public charter school this year. We moved her there because of all the opportunities that were available to her. I know every parent says their child is special and has extra talent but Grace really does. In kindergarten, she was getting into some trouble, little more engaged than the others. Sounds funny but she couldn’t help getting up and helping her classmates. To the point her teacher had to give her extra work.
Same thing happened in first grade. When we asked what she did in school that day, she always said she went to the library. I started to be concerned and worry when several days went by like that. Then her teacher called me for a conference. Grace had more than excelled in her class. She was bored. Teacher had made Grace class leader and she would help teach but still bored. So teacher asked her what she wanted to do and she always said she wanted to read. That’s how she was getting out of class to the library. After a second conference because Grace was blazing through test, the teacher and I decided that Grace needed to be challenged more. I let the teacher decide what needed to be done at school and asked if she could send 2 extra homeworks home. About mid-year our plan had started working. The teacher sent Grace to work with the special needs children. Grace was paired with an autistic boy and they quickly bonded. At home, with the 2 extra homework assignments, Grace sat up her own classroom. She began to teach her younger sisters. We did all this til the end of year.
Around March, we discovered the charter school, toured it and interviewed several members of its staff. The charter school was in its first year, everybody was new, curriculum was all new, the experience was all new. They were K-4 and adding a new grade every year to grade 8. They offer Spanish and Mandarin together to all students as well as some business education courses. Just the stuff to challenge Grace. We decided to enroll her.
So far this year, she is bored BUT the school has spent all this time in testing and will continue til December. They are a year round school so they can spend more time with the kids. Classroom has 13-15 students plus a teachers aide. Grace has proved to be far more ahead of her classmates again. The difference is, after the new year, when all the testing is done and all scores are final, she will be placed in another class. Her and about 3 other children in the school are very advance. The school has a certified gifted and talented teacher that they are considering. They may advance her into a different grade level (she tested last year with a reading level of 8th grade with comprehension level of 4th grade). Last option is using a teacher that will have a class of advance with behind children. Using the advanced to help teach the children with difficulties. Many choices to chose from just need to see the scores when done with the test.
Last night was open house and we met all her teachers. They couldn’t say enough good stuff about her. We were so proud. The part I was most proud about was right before we left. We had asked to meet the principal. We all went to his office, closed the door and I sat perfectly still as my 7 year old child began to tell the principal about a 9 year old child and her 6 year old brother, hitting her and threatening her and a bus mate. She was scared but she sat straight and repeated everything she had told me. The principal was very detailed in the notes he was taking. He assured her that she would not be bullied and she would be safe. She never said a word other than what was being asked and she didn’t make any noise. She would occasional have a tear roll down her cheek which was like a dagger into my heart.
I am so proud of my good student but so much more proud of her having the guts to stand up for her and her friend on the bus where they are being mentally, emotionally and physically abused.
One day, I hope she knows just how much I love her and will support her in everything she ever tries.


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