First day of kindergarten (goes off with a hitch)

The much anticipated day arrived and when I was making coffee, some full-blown kid in a school uniform walked in my posing as my alleged 5yo daughter. Her “big kid” look is even more amplified by her recent hair cut and new glasses (found out she was near-sighted two weeks ago)

Getting her to school and into the classroom went without a hitch. The return home, however, hitched badly. Of the learning and social transition into kindergarten, we had no worries. Our anxieties were over the actual logistics, particularly riding the bus, something in which she has been pining to do. Our anxiety stems from just pure protectiveness. At the pre-schools and daycares, we hand deliver the kids and they are hand delivered back.  Letting them get on the bus and then make their own way to the classroom and their way back onto the correct bus all sounded a bit frightening. We therefore agreed upon shuttling her ourselves in the beginning and would later let her ride the bus if she persisted.

We filled out the forms. We discussed this with the teacher twice and one more time this morning. At 3:00pm sharp, I pull up and NOBODY knows where my kid is. I asked if it was possible that she got on the bus and they were “quite sure” she did not. I then used a wide range of my best sentence enhancers in regards to locating my child instantly. They searched bathrooms. I still had a hunch she was on the bus so I told them to call the bus driver to stop and check the manifesto, hopefully assuming at this point that they had one. It was unbelievable I had to suggest this. Thankfully, she was on the bus, but it also meant that she was en route to a parentless destination. I managed to beat the bus home, and for the most part, all is well. The principal endured about an hour long verbal drubbing from my wife, and from what I can tell, she’s going for round two tomorrow.

7 thoughts on “First day of kindergarten (goes off with a hitch)

  1. That had to be so terrible. Frightened and enraged Mom and Dad, not a good combo. I’m so glad everything eventually turned out okay.
    It reminds me of a not-at-all-similar situation with my son’s first bus-riding experience in 4th grade. I took him the first morning, but he wanted to ride the bus home. I did everything short of tatooing his bus number on his forearm. He got on the right bus, he just didn’t understand the protocol for getting OFF the bus at his stop. That afternoon, my husband and I watched the bus roll by and even saw that our son was onboard. At the corner, several kids get off, but not our kid. Next corner? More kids, not ours. At that point my husband jumped in the car to chase the bus. Twenty minutes later, the bus rolls up to my driveway and my kid, the last rider, gets off. The bus driver said, “He never said a word! I had to stop and ask him where he lived!” My husband drove up a few minutes later–he’d been chasing the wrong bus all over the neighborhood and only came home when he realized the bus had emptied of kids. We never got a straight answer from my son about why he never got off the bus. You have to wonder what goes through their heads at every age.

  2. Excellent photograph.Parenting is quite a journey. When my son started school we lived in spitting distance of the school – the school parking lot was two houses away. However, the board had this policy and the school had this route and it equalled absurdity. It was decided to avoid the type of situation you described that the teacher would escort the students from and to the bus. As a consequence, my son was picked up by the bus which would pull up ahead wait for the teacher and we would watch him get off the bus in line with all the other little ducks to be taken into the school building. Now we are in process of helping him move from one college & apartment to another (city) college & apartment. It does not stop: it just changes. School won’t start in Ontario for a couple of weeks.

  3. On the bright side, you now have a great story to tell! That’s a really nice portrait of your daughter. Our little one turned out to be near-sighted too, but we only discovered it in Grade 1. She now sports some cool, pink glasses which she even manages to usually remember!

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