Ava has been going to school since she was 18 months old and has loved almost every minute of it since the day she started. We’ve had very few drop off wobbly’s and she has grown in leaps and bounds since starting.
In preparation for Grade R, we moved her at the beginning of this year to her new school, the one which, God willing, she will attend until she matriculates. She’s at the pre-primary school, in Grade PR1, and in spite of all the changes, being separated from her friends and being a very tiny fish in a now very large pond, she seems to be loving it.
The school is fabulous and provide so many things that make my life so much easier, swimming lessons included in the normal curriculum, tea time snacks of sandwiches and fruit and a cooked lunch everyday before she comes home as well as a long an impressive list of extra-curricular activities for us to choose from which happen after the normal school day ends at 1pm.
We’ve just had one huge hiccup this year… her transport home from school. The lift service we were using at her old school can still collect her but only on Wednesdays – Fridays when she has extra-murals, which finish at 2pm and even then the lifting service will collect her late at 2:30pm and Walter and I have to manage our work schedules to ensure that one of us is always available to collect her by 1pm on a Monday & Tuesday. In addition, in order to hold her place with the lifting service, we have to pay the full monthly fee even though she’s only being collected at most, 3 times a week.
We’ve been racking our brains trying to come up with the best possible solution, one that will suite Ava and of course fit in with our work schedules. After much discussing, we’ve made the decision to put her into after-care.
This has been a tough decision to make but we keep having to remind ourselves that it will not be punishment for Ava. Paying a little more each month and losing the cost of the lift service actually means that Ava will get to stay at school until just after 3pm each day when I will be able to collect her everyday. She will be surrounded by friends and have lots of fun activities that stave off boredom and have access to lots of free play in the fantastic school playground.
The alternative is currently being dropped off at home by a very flustered mom or dad and then watching TV on her own with only the nanny & Hannah for company until we come home from work. She gets bored and as a result, teases Hannah mercilessly or gets up to mischief, like painting the back of the bedroom doors with my nail polish which she steals out my draws.
It has really been a hard decision, but once Walter and I got over our own preconceived notions about after-care, it seemed like the only logical choice to make. And after discussing it with Ava, I’m even more convinced we’ve made the right decision. On asking her if she’d like to continue coming home from school early every day and staying with Eva and Hannah or staying at school later and I’d fetch her every day, her response was: “I wish I could stay at school forever!” and then she proceeded to inform us that Hannah just irritates her in the afternoons anyway! 🙂
So starting February, Ava will be going into after-care and we’ll see how this change in our schedules benefits and impacts all of us.
Oh and just a little brag… my hearts, my loves, my beautiful family!