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Friday, September 04, 2009

School Spirit, Not so Much

On Wednesday, Lucas got sent home a note from school stating that Friday (today) would be school spirit day and that "Students may participate by wearing regular uniform bottoms paired with a school colored or bulldog t-shirt." (His school mascot is a bulldog.) I didn't know if they meant that the shirt had to be a plain colored school colored shirt or if it could have a graphic on it but be okay as long as the shirt was red. So, to be safe I decided to get Lucas a shirt with a bulldog on it.

Thursday after I helped take care of my Grandma I stopped by Target on the way home. I was hoping to find a UGA shirt with a bulldog on it, because I thought with football season it would be easy to find. I ended up finding a shirt with a dog on it that I thought looked like a bulldog. When I got home I started thinking that maybe that wasn't a bulldog on the shirt and didn't want Lucas to get in trouble for not really wearing a bulldog shirt. So late Thursday night I ended up making a late night run for Wal-Mart to find a bulldog shirt. Again I looked for a UGA shirt but couldn't find one. I was so excited to see a cute shirt in the kids section that had a cute bulldog on it and even said "BULLDOGS" across it and had a cute picture of a bulldog wearing a red shirt. I was so happy because I thought I had bought the perfect shirt!

This morning Lucas did NOT want to go to school. He was up watching cartoons and playing trains before our alarm even went off. I got him to eat breakfast, brush his teeth, and get dressed without a fight. Then I showed him his special Spirit day shirt and he actually got a little excited... until I made him walk out the door to the car. He kept saying he wanted to stay home and play with his toys. When we got to the school he was crying for me to please take him home. When I unbuckled his car seat he bucked it back up. A teacher came to our car to help Lucas out of the car (not knowing I was having trouble getting him out) and then started to try and convince him about all the fun he would have (he wasn't buying what she was selling.) Then his Teachers Assistant walked up and it took the three of us to pry him out of the car. All the while he is screaming that he doesn't want to go to school and he doesn't want me to leave him. The T.A. had to carry him off to class. I drove away crying.

Thirty minutes after I dropped Lucas off at school I got a phone call from a number I didn't recognize. I was almost completely to my Mom's house to take care of my Grandma again. I just knew it was the school telling me Lucas was still upset or something. Turns out it was Lucas' teacher. She asked to speak to me then told me that Lucas was out of uniform. I explained to her that the letter sent home said a school colored shirt OR one with a bulldog. She asked me to hold and put on the other Kindergarten teacher on the phone. Again I explained to her that according to the letter he was wearing a bulldog shirt like the letter stated he could. She very nicely told me that the letter should have been clearer and stated that the bulldog shirt had to be school colors and that Lucas would have to change clothes. I told her I understood, that he had the spare uniform at school that he was required to have, and the phone call ended.

When I got off the phone I was so angry, not at the teachers (they were nice and just doing their jobs) but that the letter wasn't clear. We are new to the school so how are we supposed to know what the letter means. I can only go by what it SAYS! The letter says a school colored shirt OR a bulldog shirt. It did not say a plain school colored shirt OR a school colored shirt with a bulldog. I was also angry that my kid that didn't even WANT to go to school had to change shirts because of an unclear letter. Then on top of that I was a little annoyed that the 2 teachers that saw him in the carpool lane, while I was STILL at the school didn't say anything about his shirt breaking the dress code, although to be fair I guess that they might not have noticed since they were trying to extract my child from the car at the time.

When I picked Lucas up from school in the afternoon he was wearing his red polo uniform shirt and his teacher said he was doing awesome in class. She said the only problem she was having with him though is that he is spitting. She explained he wasn't trying to spit at other kids, or doing it to cause trouble or interrupt the class, but doing it to entertain himself, but it was bothering the other kids and if we could please talk to him. The second she walked away from the car Lucas started to bawl and say "I'm a bad kid, I'm doing bad in school. I don't want to go back." I'm NOT looking forward to next week, and I have a feeling neither is Lucas.

Oh, and the icing on the cake... when I checked his backpack when he got home, the offending shirt wasn't even in the bag. I am going to be pretty annoyed if it got sent home with another child or lost some other way.

1 comment:

Three Dots... said...

Something about this just seems really wrong...not only that the note was poorly written...but also that they have to go out of the way to call you and have him change even though you obviously had tried to comply. It is that shaming attitude that I just detest. Just let it go and connect with the children, its the first week they are in a new environment, scared etc....instead of worrying about a stupid rule that should have been a guideline anyway and wasting all that time and energy to have him change. I am probably going to have to bite my tongue a lot when its my turn!