Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Looming School Decision

Awhile back, I wrote a post about our upcoming decision about where Pumpkin (and eventually Petunia) will go to school. That decision is inching closer.

On Monday, Hubby and I tool the day off of work to visit a couple of potential schools for Pumpkin. We're faced with a decision because while our neighborhood school has a decent reputation, we don't think it offers any language instruction- not even in the after school programs. This bothers us for several reasons:
  1. Pumpkin likes learning languages, and early indications are that Petunia will, too (she certainly loves our language DVDs).
  2. Research shows that early childhood is the best time to learn a second language. There is also research indicating that learning one new language makes it easier to learn other languages later, and that it can improve performance in your native language, too. (Yes, I am too lazy to dig up the links to that research. Sorry.)
  3. This is one academic area in which we feel completely unqualified to offer enrichment at home. As a scientist and an engineer, both now working in computers, we can probably cover the math/science/tech area. I like history and we both like to read, so we can probably cover those areas, too. But neither of us is fluent in another language, which we both regret. So, like all good parents, we're going to try to have our children make up for our shortcomings.
Anyway, back to our school decision. In San Diego, you can "choice" into any public school (subject to availability of space), and there are a range of magnet schools available focusing on various topics. You write your top five choices on a form, and then there is a lottery to decide who gets which choice. The form is due February 15. Magnet schools also often have enrollment targets to ensure diversity. There are several magnet schools that focus on teaching a second language in addition to the regular curriculum. One, a Spanish language immersion school, is actually closer to our house than our neighborhood school. It is two blocks away. We've been intrigued by it since we moved in and figured out what it was. In an immersion school, all or most instruction is conducted in the new language. We wondered how that would work, and weren't sure if it would be a good fit for Pumpkin. It is a K-8 school (although we could pull our kids out after 5th grade and go to another middle school if we wanted), and we wondered whether the math offerings in the middle school years would be sufficient.

Another magnet is a "Spanish enrichment" school in a neighborhood that would be convenient for our commute to and from work. Its curriculum includes 30 minutes of Spanish instruction every day, except for the "minimal day" (half day) that all San Diego public schools have every week due to budget cuts. We wondered if this level of Spanish would be worth the extra drive.

There are two other language magnets that we have considered. One offers an immersion program in French or Spanish, but is in a location that is not at all convenient for us- it is at least 20 minutes out of the way for our commute. There would be buses, but these have been cut recently, too, and we're not sure we want our kids to have long bus commutes this early in their education. The other offers a semi-immersion program in Chinese. It is in a moderately inconvenient location- Google maps says it is a 13 minute drive from our house, but we know that it is in a part of town with bad rush hour traffic. Also, it seems that the curriculum hasn't really stabilized. They started as an enrichment program and are now transitioning to immersion (except for "English language arts"- i.e., reading and grammar). So we hadn't really been considering it.

But now... well, now we're scrambling a bit to figure out what we should do. I hate to say it, but my friend who was horrified that we hadn't started looking into schools at this time last year was probably right: we should have started working on this earlier.

We loved the Spanish immersion school in our neighborhood. We got to see the Kindergarten classes, and they were amazing. The students were all speaking (and reading!) Spanish. They seemed happy, and while the school's resources aren't amazing, they aren't bad. There is a diverse group of students, both in terms of race and socioeconomic status, which we like. The magnet resource teacher who gave the tour had great answers to all of our questions. In short, we would be very, very happy if Pumpkin got to go to school there. But our chances are not great. The school had 300 applicants for 160 spots for this school year. They have divided the district into three zones, and we are in the zone that gets the fewest spots (23% of the incoming class). Now, we don't know how many applicants they usually get from our zone, so maybe it isn't so bad. But we can't count on getting in, so at the very least we need a strong plan B.

We thought the Spanish enrichment magnet was OK. However, the magnet resource teacher who gave the tour seemed to be downplaying the Spanish curriculum. This could have been because a couple of other parents on the tour responded quite negatively to her discussion of the Spanish program. They gave the impression that they thought learning a second language was a waste of time that would take valuable class time away from some other, more important subject. So maybe she was just trying to allay their fears. I need to call the magnet teacher and figure out what the goal of the Spanish program is at that school. Should a child who completes K-5 at that school be able to place in an intermediate or advanced Spanish class in middle school? Or is it more like the Spanish I had in school, which left me able to count and say a few colors, and not much else? The rest of the programs at that school seemed fine, but I was left with a vague feeling of unease about the other parents. I think most people were there looking at the school because it would get them on track to feed into one of the higher ranked high schools in the district, and not because of the programs that school offered. Several of the other parents were talking about how they wished they could get into the school in the next neighborhood over, which is ranked as one of the best in San Diego. Fair enough- but the reliance on the single number ranking has problems, and that ranking is based largely on test scores. I suspect that the other school has such high test scores because it takes very few out of area kids, and it is in a relatively wealthy part of town. Interestingly, some of the other parents were planning to check out our neighborhood school, too.

We can't go and visit our neighborhood school until January 31. I suspect that it will seem on par with the Spanish enrichment magnet, but without any language offerings. I've been looking into whether we could add an after school language program on our own, and we could, but it may not be easy. There are classes available from several places, but they typically start at 4:30- which is a little early for us. One of us would have to tweak our schedule to make that happen. I did find one program that will bring the class to you at a time of your choosing, so that might be an option if we could either find one other family who was interested in it or were willing to pay for a two person class on our own. Or, we could try to find an after school nanny who could tutor Spanish (given our proximity to Mexico, I actually suspect that this would be feasible).

We've also started thinking about our other options. Perhaps we should reconsider that Chinese magnet. We're running short on time for visits- we're both really busy at work right now, so all of these visits are difficult to schedule. However, there is a "school fair" that we could attend on January 28, which would give us some information. We could write the Chinese magnet in as our third choice, and then figure out whether or not we would take the space if it were offered to us. The only problem with this approach is that writing anything in addition to our first choice makes it a little harder for us to get our first choice. The initial lottery disregards this information, but they place everyone into schools if they can- and then take them out of consideration if a spot opens up later at the top choice school. The magnet teacher at the Spanish immersion school gave us some tips for handling that, though.

Another option would be to consider private schools as a fall back plan. The "top" private school in our area offers language classes (of course). It also costs $23,000 per year. We might get financial aid, but I'm doubtful. Remember that we will eventually have two kids in school and this school runs through high school (and I sort of doubt we'd have the fortitude to pull our kids out of the private school as they got older- but you never know). Also, the diversity at that school isn't so great (as you'd expect with a price tag like that).

There is also a French bilingual school that actually is accredited in France as well as California. It is in a location that would be moderately inconvenient, but not terrible for us. We know some people who sends their kids there, and they really like it. The kids are also bona fide polyglots, thanks to the fact that their parents have two different native languages (neither of them English), and there is French and Spanish taught at the school. I think the older child is also starting Chinese now. My husband works with the mother, so he is going to ask her for more details- like how much it costs. We could call the school and get this information, too. It is not on their website. We also don't know when we'd have to apply for that school, and when we'd have to commit to it if we wanted to go there.

So, we have some tough decisions ahead. Here are the options as I see them:
  1. Write all three possible magnets on our choice form, with the Spanish immersion one as our top choice. Follow up as recommended by the magnet teacher and hope for the best. We've heard that it is very likely (almost certain) that we would be offered one of the three choices.
  2. Write only the Spanish immersion school on our choice form, but research the French bilingual private school and consider that our back up plan.
  3. Write only the Spanish immersion school on our choice form, consider our neighborhood school as our back up plan, and assume that we will be able to make some sort of after school or weekend language class or tutoring work out.
  4. Let go of our obsession with having our kids learn a second language. Write the Spanish immersion school on our form, hope for the best, but just go with the flow at our neighborhood school if we don't get it.
Do any of see any other options? Do you think we're crazy for worrying so much about languages (a lot of the other parents at day care do)? Feel free to tell me what you think about any of this in the comments.

21 comments:

  1. Aubergine Kenobi2:35 AM

    First of all, let me tell you that I really don't think you should let go of your obsession for your children to learn a second language, it is really one of the best gifts a parent can make to their children. Also, we live in a globalized society. Speaking more than one language (even if this one language is English) is becoming more and more of an asset instead of a commodity.
    That said, I don't think that if Pumkin doesn't start learning a second language when she starts kindergarden will mean she can't learn it in a couple of years. I'd go for option number 3, but not sweat it if you can't make the extra tutoring/class work right away. With more time and research, I'm sure you'll be able to find something that fits.
    When discussing languages, I also think it's worthwhile to define what are your goals in terms of language acquisition. Do you want her to be able to speak and write the language (the best way to achieve this is through more formal lessons, to grasp grammar, spelling and so on)? Is it OK if she only speaks it (this can be done with tutoring by a native speaker or a fluent speaker)? Are you also interested in the cultural side of the language?
    Finally (but this might be less important now in a word with internet), how easy will it be to find material/people to practice?
    Sorry for the long comment, learning languages is a really important subject to me, hope Pumkin gets a place in your Spanish immersion school!

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  2. My step-mother (who is my age, don't ask) is fluent in Spanish both reading and writing and didn't learn it until high school. She has no Spanish members in her family. I've been told her accent is quite good. She's an ESL teacher. I don't think she's a freak of nature.

    I think school choice is one of those things, when presented with many options, that drives parents crazy at the time but big picture it'll all work out just fine.

    Good luck and I hope you get your first choice.

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  3. 1. I'm jealous
    2. why not use this criteria. It is a good as any
    3. my sister didn't learn spanish until high school and is fluent so do keep that in mind, it isn't do or die
    4. knock out anything that screws your commute IMHO
    5. have you considered benefit of neighborhood school in terms of friendship with other kids/community involvement? Not sure how much of a factor that is for you.

    GL. I'm sure whatever happens P and P will be FAB because all the choices sound pretty damn good!

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  4. paola5:36 AM

    i agree totally with @ feMOMist, to find something that won't screw your commutes to work around. i have just moved my kids to a school 400 m away as the commute to the other school was such a PINA.

    As for the language thing, honestly, it is enough that the kids learn to speak the foreign language well. They will learn to write it eventually, but there is probably some truth in the fact that learning to write 2 languages at the same time at that age can cause confusion. i learnt to read Italian when I was in my mid-thirties and I can read Eco now! Not that you will wait that long, but it doesn't have to be simultaneous.

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  5. I don't envy you your decisions! But I do envy your options!

    We're still working hard on making sure our school of choice still exists next year. The administration (basically two people) is making it difficult because they have big optimism and very little understanding of numbers or budget cutting. (No, we're NOT going to raise another 300K next year. That isn't going to happen. That means things have to be cut or the school will go under.)

    If the school doesn't make it then our choices are:
    1. Spanish immersion public K (this is lottery)
    2. Regular public K
    3. 1st grade at private school that somehow makes kids stupider by the time they graduate
    4. K-3 Montessori geared towards housewives (you have to pay extra to not pick your kid up for lunch!)
    5. Push harder on the Catholic K to make an exception for 1st grade for DC
    6. Catholic K
    7. Push harder on local public to make an exception for DC to go into first, even though he's just average height.

    I think our next choice would be either pushing on the Catholic school or just going to the K-3 Montessori and paying a college kid to chauffeur and babysit. The only options above that would be guaranteed if we chose them are the lousy prep school and the public K. The rest have wait lists or depend on the grace of administrators.

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  6. You should worry about languages! Having a second language is such an asset and it's so easy when you're young. I vaguely recall the cutoffs being roughly 2, 12 and 20 for learning second languages (these being ages when it becomes harder to add a language if you don't already speak at least 2).

    I was raised in a bilingual household. Both my parents learned a second language as adults because they lived in a foreign country for work and were determined to pass it on. By high school I spoke 5 languages. Even though I'm a biophysicist, language learning changes your brain in innumerable non-linguistic ways (I'm also too lazy to find the research and besides, technically I'm patch clamp recording as I type...).

    While certainly having an after-school nanny who speaks a foreign language would be great, I think an immersion school would be even better because of the diversity of vocabulary and also the presumed focus on being able to read and write the second language as opposed to just having a conversational knowledge.

    But, as with most parenting issues, kids turn out fine who speak one language, or five. Kids turn out fine in daycare or at home, in public school or private, raised abroad or in the US. So what works will work, because your kids have parents who care about them no matter what school they attend.

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  7. Thanks, everyone. I agree that the kids will be fine no matter what we do- but, as mom2boy says, school choice screws with your mind. It feels so important- and it is- but in a "will influence the kids' lives" sort of way, not determine whether they are homeless people are millionaires.

    Anyway, our original goal with language in elementary years is speaking/understanding. It would be awesome if they became fluent, but really we just want to keep their options open so that later on they could do the work to be truly fluent.

    But the immersion school was so awesome- it made us think again.

    Also, I'm pretty sure that Pumpkin already knows most of the things in the regular K curriculum, so the Spanish immersion would have the benefit of really teaching her something new. I need to look into our K curriculum a little more. She is in no way emotionally ready to be accelerated, so we need to find a way to give her the intellectual challenge in a K setting, I think.

    The nanny/tutor option would slant towards tutor- just a tutor who is also willing to take care of her while I'm not home. So, maybe a "college nannies and tutors" sort of thing.

    Finding chances to practice Spanish around here will be very easy. We can get Spanish language kids shows on TV. There are lots of people who speak it, and we could always just go down to Mexico if we wanted more. It is easy to get Spanish books, etc, too.

    Chinese practice would be a little harder, but not impossible, particularly since both my husband and I work with a bunch of Chinese people who are generally pretty tickled/amused that our kid is learning Chinese, and often offer to bring us books and things.

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  8. Some thoughts:
    1) I checked out our branch of the French immersion school last year. It was super fantastic (except for lunches- why didn't they have excellent food??) but $1200 a month. Sorry. Not going to happen for Kindergarten. (And it was out of the way--I'd scratch all bad commutes off your list right now!)
    2) We're really stuck with the neighborhood benefits vs school benefits right now. Think about carpooling in the future--would that help simplify your life?
    3) If Spanish is your goal, I think 1 on 1 with a nanny is not only going to be the easiest way to achieve speaking fluency, it may also help with other juggle issues
    4) Have you looked at parochial schools? The Catholic School down the street from us is only $575/month for non-Catholics (us), offers Spanish, art and music and is a national blue ribbon school (whatever that means). Last year we didn't make the cut, but since K classes are larger than pre-K so this is what we're hoping for. It's also full day Kinder- don't know who decided that public school Kindergarten should be 2 hours long, so when you figure in the cost of additional child care, the private school tuition doesn't seem so bad.

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  9. Lots of great comments here.

    I personally would go with option #3. I went to schools that had 30-60min of French a day from K-12 and I am not really comfortable speaking French (although neither my parents or I made an effort to work on it outside of school)so I am not convinced of the usefulness of these 30min of language enrichment. I think that if the goal is comfort with speaking, a Spanish tutor/nanny would be more effective than 30min of school.

    As others have mentioned, I think commute and peers would be a big consideration for me. There are some great benefits of having school friends who are also neighbours and I would have to really really like another school over the neighbourhood school to choose it instead.

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  10. I'd go w/ #3, hope for the immersion magnet close to home and use the neighborhood school w/ enrichment as a backup plan. If the enrichment is too stressful on your schedule, then default to #4.

    Stay close. You don't have any margin in your schedule as it is so don't add any more commute stress.

    Don't go the private school tuition route. You need that $ for retirement and college savings.

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  11. I like option 1, *plus* researching a private school as backup. If you're already paying for daycare for both, you're making the room for the $ in your budget, right?

    At least that's how I look at it...

    But I'm probably in the minority here when I say that the *school* and its fit for my child to get the best education she can, is my top priority.

    I'd love for that to be a school with both cultural and socioeconomic diversity, without impact to my commute, but likely I'm not going to find all of that. I'm just not a fan of public schools unless you're lucky enough to get into a magnet or some other program/school where parents and students are highly motivated to participate.

    For me, "good enough" and "just fine" don't work. I need it to be as well-suited for my child as I can find. Because I think getting a great education is the most important thing.

    Mind you, I'm not willing to add 30 min or an hour to my commute for incremental gains, though :)

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  12. I think part of what the research on early exposure to language shows is that it changes brain receptivity to language learning latter in life. Sure, someone can learn a language in adulthood, but it's more difficult than it is as a young child. Even if the child later forgets the language, the groundwork is there, making it easier, as Cloud wrote, to re-learn the language, or learn 2 or 3 more. As someone who works with foreign languages as a living, I can say I really wish I'd had that opportunity, and I've struggled my whole adult life to achieve proficiency. Fluency is really only possible with immersion. I think we'd pick the immersion, if we loved it. We would've put ours in French immersion preschool except for the instability of our situation. (French over Spanish, because DH is Canadian).

    You guys are really lucky to have so many public immersion options. We have zero, and now that DS#1 is super into Spanish (which he has in small doses at his pre-school), I'm starting to regret not being able to offer him more in terms of language enrichment. We'll see. If we moved back to Canada, we would definitely put both of them in French schools asap.

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  13. I knew you would all have interesting and smart things to say. Some more info on our situation:

    1. My neighborhood is not kid-heavy, so I'm not super concerned about having her in school with neighborhood kids. We'll meet some in other ways, and chances are that her friends at our neighborhood school won't be solo walking distance to us, anyway, at least not until the later years of elementary school. We have already met the closest kid who would be in Pumpkin's class at the local school, and since we like the parents, we'll probably stay in touch.

    Parochial schools are non-starters for us, due to my husband's beliefs. Neither of us is religious, but my husband is actively opposed to religious instruction. It is a shame- we have an excellent Catholic school in our neighborhood. But I understand his concerns, and I knew this about him when I married him!

    We've ruled out options that really screw with our commute. And the commute factor will be a part of any decision about the two moderately inconvenient options! I agree that the happiness of the entire family counts for something, too.

    I think our local school is quite good, except for the lack of language. Of course I haven't toured it yet, so I'm just going on word of mouth (neighborhood and various teachers I know). @Anandi- most public schools in relatively well off neighborhoods in SD are actually pretty good. I don't know about your city, but I'd suspect the same. There has been a lot of talk about our "failing public schools" that is just fear-mongering. You've got time, so of course you haven't looked at your schools yet, so please don't think I'm criticizing you (and of course, I think everyone should do what is best for their kids)- but don't assume your neighborhood school is bad. There's a good chance that it isn't bad at all.

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  14. "Parochial schools are non-starters for us"

    us too which sucks as most private schools in our area are religiously affiliated.

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  15. That seems like an awful lot of options to have to consider. I'm so glad I only had 2! I was really torn last year between letting E stay at the local school where she goes for daycare, and putting her on the list for the French Immersion school. It was a tough decision, because I was in the immersion program as a kid, and I agree with everything you've said about learning a language young.

    So here are my thoughts on the matter: Being able to walk to school is awesome. Immersion programs (at least where I'm from) are overrated - you can wind up with mediocre teachers whose only qualification is speaking another language and not skill in the subject they are teaching (I guess having mediocre teachers can happen in any school, but it seems worst in the immersion schools - maybe not so big a problem for Spanish where you are). I think that formal education in a second language is a great idea, but it doesn't necessarily have to happen within a school. Especially now that no one seems to be teaching English properly, it can be the only way kids get to learn grammar & sentence structure.

    In your shoes I think I'd go with plan 3 (while considering plan 2) since your kids seem to interested in languages. If you can find the right person, having a language tutor willing to pick Pumpkin up after school would be totally awesome.

    I wound up deciding to let E go to the local school - it is closer, has a far more interesting demographic, she's already familiar with it and loves it there...and she just doesn't seem that interested in languages, as well as being one of the youngest kids in the class. On the other hand, I am qualified to teach her a second language, and I'm scheming with a Swiss friend to do a language exchange when our kids are old enough for it.

    Good luck with the decisions. I'm pretty confident that whatever happens there will be good and bad things that you hadn't anticipated, and it sounds like you're doing enough research to avoid being blindsided by anything major

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  16. I would probably go with 3 too. The Spanish language immersion sounds great - and two blocks from home is a total winner for me. I would probably go with Spanish over Chinese due to the greater opportunity to *hear* the language spoken around you. Having said that, I've lived in several different non-english speaking countries, learnt a bit of the language in each one - but my "best" second language is still French - just because I learned it for the longest time and it's closest to English (from Arabic, Malay & Mandarin Chinese).

    At home, when speaking to Moo I just throw in different words for things according to our family jargon be that American, Australian or New Zealand English - (and they are different!) plus a few Arabic and Malay words that stuck. We also read a few French storybooks together sometimes - but nothing formal. Unfortunately, my French is too rusty to talk to her casually.

    Actually, that comment about different Englishes is a big one for Moo. The other day I was sitting on the couch arguing with my sister and father over whether we should be telling Moo to call a particular pair of shoes jandals, thongs or flip-flops. In our house, it's jandals. My sister (who started speaking in an American language environment) calls them flip-flops and my father calls them the very Australian 'thongs'. Does that count as managing foreign languages?!?

    Anyway, I have lots of sympathy, because I can't believe it - but I need to make a decision on schools by July this year! Feck, Moo is only 2! However, one of our possible choices is a private school with it's main intake in 3 year old pre-kindy (as either a 2 or 3 day/week program). One of the other options is a French pre-school (located about a 10 minute walk from home). French is my second language, so I think that would be good for both of us. However, that only takes her up to kindergarten - after which it's unlikely (but not impossible) that she could transfer into the private school. Sending her to our neighbourhood school after that makes me nervous - it's got a very mixed catchment (we would likely be by the most affluent family in her class) and pretty average resources but that is balanced against very small class sizes and a strong policy on keeping the first few years as single year rather than split year classes (a split class has kids from two grades in the class, ie 2/3, 3/4). And this is of course, all complicated by the fact that we could be back in New Zealand for a year next year. Ugh.

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  17. @Cloud - You are totally right, where I live the public schools are definitely pretty good, and in fact the neighboring district's high school is 14th in the country (fwiw re: rankings, but we live about 1.5 miles too far!)

    We will definitely consider our local schools, but with budgets cuts, they are talking about squeezing 35-40 kids into a K classroom (with a teacher + aide). THAT doesn't work for me, right there. But the situation may chance in 3 years...

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  18. mary d6:53 PM

    We went through this last year. I feel your pain.

    Personally, I'd go with #4, but the 2nd language thing is not a big deal for us (and my husband is fluent in 2 languages!). I suspect it's a location thing -- SD is much more diverse than here in the midwest.

    Your private school -- WOW. Our local non-religious private school was $11k for kindergarten and that was too much, for the same reason as you said -- a second kid. We REALLY wanted to send him there, and probably could've swung it with just one (with the hope of financial aid after kindergarten) but no way with two.

    We wound up choosing the local Catholic school (we're Catholic, so no big deal there, and it's $1200 which is WAY less than daycare). What swayed us over the neighborhood public school was their discipline structure and how they work with boys (obviously not an issue for you ...). J is very active and very bright and gets into trouble when bored so we needed a place that would meet him there. The public school seemed more interested in making boys conform so bye-bye to them.

    J is similar to Pumpkin in that he is academically ready for school but emotionally not that advanced (he's one of the youngest in his class with a summer birthday). His teacher has been pretty good about giving him extra stuff to do and rewarding him with things like math games and such. He's now getting to things he didn't already know (money and time, mostly) so we're hoping he'll be more challenged.

    Good luck with all of this! I look forward to hearing where she ends up.

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  19. I'm with @mom2boy - this seems way more high stakes than it probably is. I recall some research saying it's enough simply to have explored the range of educational choices; kids from families who explored but weren't accepted had very similar educational outcomes as kids who were accepted.

    Based on the incomplete info you have now, I like Option #3 because you write with the most passion about the Spanish immersion school and it sounds like an excellent fit (though it's all kind of conjecture until you actually tour your neighborhood school - then I bet you'll know enough to finally decide.)

    It sounds like your gut already knows the Spanish enrichment magnet would not be a good fit - so Option 1 seems like a fail if that's even a possible outcome. (Maybe just list 2 schools instead of 3?)

    With the enviable choice set you have in front of you there's no way in hell I'd ever be cool with shelling out $23k-$46k per year on something I could get for free. Be a satisficer, not a maximizer, no?

    I understand completely the language obsession, especially given Pumpkin's demonstrated interest in it. As others have said, you need not start the kid at age 6 or she's forever doomed to be monolingual. I'm fluent in 1 other language besides my native English, I'm proficient in 3 others, and I didn't start learning my first foreign language until 8th grade. I didn't even leave the country for the first time until 12th grade. Again, this school choice business all seems super high stakes - but remember there are many ways to achieve your language goals for your kids.

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  20. You have had lots of input and have a clear sense of you choices. I raised my three kids speaking Spanish. It was a complete success (they are all bilingual and biliterate), but it is a huge amount of work. My best advice is to go with the option that you can sustain. Consistency over time, years,is everything. Also consider which language you are going to be able to supplement with time in other countries to provide true immersion in the culture and the language.
    ¡Buena suerte!

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  21. Thanks, @Jennifer. Our goal isn't necessarily full biliteracy, although that would be nice. We mainly want to keep their options open by giving them a strong foundation in another language. If they choose to continue with it, then they can do so much more easily if they kept the sounds in their repertoire.

    I'll probably be writing another school choice post soon- we're getting more info and nearing our decision point!

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