Saturday, June 7, 2008
Registration Blues Part 5......Getting Accepted
It’s not often something happens concerning the New Orleans public school process that works so well that I can’t fuss. Today I met with the principal of the school I think my baby is going to attend. This new school is the spin-off from one of the other schools that we were on the waiting list for. I thought it was kind of strange he was visiting people on the weekends. After meeting with him I think since the school is new and everyone is skeptical about the charter system he took it upon himself to make a first hand presentation. I can dig that. I like the guy. The school’s mission appears to be sincere. He took away a lot of my anxiety about the whole situation. The only concern is the location of the school. It’s hard not to associate the location of the building with the neighborhood around it. That’s a pretty rough area that I personally avoid whenever possible. The principal knew exactly what I was talking about and he assured us that every measure was being taken to assure a safe environment.
Growing up in this city, you can be distracted by so many things in school. Most of the distractions come from the kids with no home training. There are kids in this city who go to school to practice fighting for neighborhood situations when they get home. Even when I was in elementary school this made no sense to me. We have always embraced that kind of behavior in a way. It’s part of our spirit as local warriors. Just like all the buildings being demolished around the city, that mentality has got to go. I’m not teaching my baby her A,B,C’s, how to spell, how to add, and all her shapes along with how to land a left jab and the proper way to break a bottle over someone’s head without killing them just so she can graduate from grade school. It’s 2008 and if she has to do those things the way her parents, grandparents and even great grandparents had to do to go to school in this city then that’s no progress at all. It’s not going to happen.
The easy solution to the whole thing would have been to cut the check and pay for private school. I think that’s where we were headed before this guy should up out of nowhere and requested her. While my personal journey may be over for now, I can’t help think about all the other kids that are not on a list anywhere, just moving back in town, or their parents don’t have the time or capacity to seek out all these different places. You may not see it now but these are the kids that end up on the Crime Stoppers billboard because no one cared what the hell happened to them at school. They are also the kids you and your kids can’t avoid if you plan on living in the city. The longer we let them get bad education is the longer we all need two guns.