Monday, August 18, 2003

School blog.

Two suspicious-looking subject lines in this morning's e-mail at the office:
"Send Your Love to Any Part of the World" and
"A World Excluse utilizing DNA" [sic, and very likely, sick]

Only one had an attachment. Both vanished down the memory hole, put there by me. More importantly this morning, I dropped by Lilly's soon-to-be elementary school (public) to register her for kindergarten. A brick edifice probably built at about the same time as the neighborhood in mid- to late-1960s, the school had that elementary school feel to it, as if it were too small for you, an adult, even though you had no trouble walking in the door.

During lunch on Friday with a writer I know, a recently married chap living in the city, he asked me, "Would you consider living in the city [Chicago] again?"
My answer: "Not as long as the schools are a broken mess."

You can rant all you want about the injustice of American school system, but as a practical matter I don't intend to be caught on the short end of that stick, if I can help it. So there I was, filling out some papers, turning other papers over to the secretary, demonstrating to the district that I had, indeed, moved into a house within stone's throw of this suburban school. I didn't have to submit DNA samples to prove paternity, but somewhere, someone is suggesting that very idea, and administrators are thinking about it -- or will be, in 2020. Perhaps Lilly will have to do that, if she ever has a child to register.

It sounds like a sour experience, but actually it wasn't at all. I even got to met the kindergarten teacher, a woman who looked to be in her 50s, with long graying hair, and more enthusiasm in her voice about the prospect of taking charge of a room full of five-year-olds than I could muster. But that's why she's a kindergarten teacher, and I'm not.


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