Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Playground Politics

We've had some issues over the last few weeks with little Bit's daycare/preschool. I'm going to copy and paste my Facebook statuses about it so I don't have to retype. So, if anyone comes by here (I know I haven't been posting) and has some advice...

May 6th -
School has called us three times to come pick Little Bit up early. He is climbing to the top of the playset, refusing to come down.. He has also hit one of the teachers in the face, knocking off her glasses. Today while we talked to the assistant director, he locked himself and another child in the bathroom, then threw wooden puzzle pieces at his teacher's face, making her cry. =:-o

The assistant director said that she was thinking he might be getting bored with his age class he's in because he's gifted. We had thought of the same thing. I'm going to look into what gifted programs the local school has, though I don't know that they have something for a(n almost) four year old. However, I read awhile ago that they test all incoming kindergarteners to see if they are gifted and need extra attention. Some school districts will test early if requested.

Last night, Little Bit asked if his dad would write out some words for him. Little Mike then proceeded to sound them out -- he read them, ya'll!! He read them. One of his teachers said within the last few months that he's also ready for early math concepts. If he follows in his dad's footsteps (what DH knew by the time he was in kindergarten), he will be reading on a college level and doing math on a high school level by kindergarten. I requested a few books on parenting gifted children at the library that were on a recommended reading list of the Texas Associated for Gifted Children.

May 11 -
Last week, we came up w/the plan for my husband to be there at playground time (when the majority of the problems were happening) as a visual deterrent. Yesterday when DH arrived, she had already pulled Little Bit to the front office. She said that LB had tried to run out the front door. Then, she seemed to think that was the last word and just walked off. DH waited to talk to her, saying I've seen other kids try to run towards the front door (IE, what's the big deal; you just stop them). She said, "NO, they don't" and then said that the director would be back today and she could decide what to do.

DH and I both went in to talk to the director this morning and tell our side of the story. It seemed the asst. director was holding a grudge and raising the bar unfairly to us. Also, while we could be sympathetic for his afternoon teacher bursting into tears, if having a child throw a puzzle piece at your face makes you cry, maybe you need to be in a different job.

Unfortunately, the director said that he can't move up to the four-year old class (and out of the current three-year old class with the new, young afternoon teacher) because there's no room. She said they were waiting until summer when some of the kids are out of the classroom and there would be room. The director suggested just seeing how Little Bit did on the playground today without DH there. At the end of the day, we talked to her. She said that LB again refused to come when the teacher called; he ran away However, he did not climb to the top of the playset as he has been doing. The new teacher has been freaking out about it, because it seemed like he was going to jump. Of course we don't want him to be hurt either. However, the director said that she talked to district/corporate, and they said if he did it (climbing to the top of the playset and not coming down or listening) again, that maybe he should stay home, because it's a safety issue. I was stunned that she said that, because he didn't even climb to the top of the set today; he was just doing his usual running around and not wanting to go back inside.

DH and I are both unhappy. We said what about the option we have already offered of Michael being here every day at 3:30/playground time to watch or to just take him home for the day to head off any problems. She said we could try that, but just the fact that she basically threw out the idea of kicking him out of school, he thinks she's made up her mind already.

We know that his morning three-year old teacher loves LB, and the four-year old teacher (he's been in there sometimes during the days) loves him a lot. He has some "best friends" among the kids. *sigh*

Edited to add -
We think he was climbing up the playset to freak them out and that he wouldn't jump, too. I think the young, new teacher just hasn't had enough experience yet, and the assistant director was just also too inexperienced at being the go-to person for issues. Of course corporate is going to go right to protecting themselves against a lawsuit and say it's a safety issue.

After a long talk, DH and I are going to be proactive -- we are taking Little Bit down to half days. If afternoon playtime is the issue, then he will just be there for the morning. We are also going to demand a firm date for when he could be moved to the four-year old room.

We will re-evaluate as the whole situation changes (if both I and DH get full-time work, etc). Little Bit will love being able to be home with us. In a few more weeks, the neighborhood pool will be open during the week and not just weekends.

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