Saturday, April 12, 2008

Checking New Schools

Do you remember when refrigerators needed to be defrosted? Did you move into your first apartment and notice a wretched smell in the fridge? Then pull out the bottom drawer to find underneath that strong smelling brown congealed goo? You can remove some of it with a scraper like extra stiff year-old uncovered Jell-O but you have to work for hours to get all the crud off? You swear you'll never use that stinky fridge, but within a week or two you have milk for cereal and 5/$1 macaroni and cheese?

That's what the school I visited Wednesday smelled like.It’s the kind of smell that gives you a headache that stays with you all day.

The people all seemed nice, and there was lots of space, nice outside area, and plenty of staff for the number of children. But the whole scene seemed like sensory overload for Thane – he is one of those little guys who gets really excited and happy, but has a hard time organizing himself and coming down again once he is over-excited. 

In some ways I feel too picky, but it also seems like it would be hard to keep him from being glutened. There was art with glutenous pasta, dog biscuits, cat treats, etc. I worry that not only would he have trouble settling down and focusing in the environment, but that it would be really hard to keep him safe. Also knowing that they did mitigation for mold and having that vile odor is worrisome for any child, not just one who with so many allergies and sensitivities. As it is, he wasn't in school for a full week between mid-November and mid-March because of illness, and this is with a staff that has kept him away from his known allergens - how much would he have missed without that?
I called the other school I need to visit to reschedule – I’ll be going next Friday since Braeden is off school and I don’t have to drive the opposite way. I am thinking I am not going to get away without having to drive two directions next year.

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