One size does NOT always fit all. Not everyone fits in the public schools’ round hole. We all have heard this, I have preached it in my professional and personal life. Sadly there aren’t a lot of alternatives these days for the kids that don’t perfectly fit into that round hole…or for those kids to feel successful. Moreover, the schools do not tell you about all your options either. They offer up continuation high school, home study and summer school, but that’s usually all. We have been struggling with my son finding his fit and have made several attempts (every year) to get the school administration involved to help find a solution; only leaving us feeling more disillusioned. And a couple months ago, he told me he didn’t think he was very smart (he has tested 2 years ahead of his grade in the past). I knew I needed to stop the influence the school system was having on his self worth and self esteem asap.
As a parent, I struggled with him needing the social aspect of high school. I have always said “The #1 thing I learned most from high school was how to sit in a room and deal with people I would NEVER choose to be with nor want to deal with.” and I firmly believe this and also feel this was one of the best skills I learned in high school that I use over and over again in life. I have always known he is extremely smart, but as with most brilliant people…social skills aren’t his best skill…and maybe not in his top 10! 🙂
One of the things the schools don’t advertise is that kids can test out of high school with the CHSPE (in California). Passing this test is EQUAL to a high school diploma. It’s better than a GED. Taking the test doesn’t mean your teen has to leave high school, but it gives them another option, and their current GPA goes away.
Dash took this test and aced it with very high scores. We are SOOOO proud of him! I was out of town when he got the news and he let me know in Dashiel’s style, with a text “I just checked, I apparently passed. I’m going to go get a milkshake and listen to pomp and circumstance” 🙂 I so love that kid! <3
He will be enrolling in the Peralta Community College system this summer and starting college a year early. He will be able to get to school on BART on his own and will finally be able to take challenging classes. Starting him at a close community college and keeping him on a similar schedule to high school, will allow him to stay in contact with his group of friends…which are amazing and wonderful teens.
So for all of you out there struggling with the public education system as a parent or as a student, there are options, and good ones. Don’t give up and don’t be afraid to pull that trigger and make a change. Send a statement “The current condition of the public school system is not satisfactory and it needs to change to accommodate ALL students and allow ALL of them to be successful!” #highschooltaughtme #highschool #college #education