I attended the HSA meeting at BF yesterday and enjoyed a visit to my middle school parent days...I remember when middle school kids made me nervous. All that drama and emotion and hormones and rebellion and attitude and straddling the line between kids and teens. I survived and, now in the high school and college years, I miss those middle school days! I now think middle school kids are so funny and all-around great.
One of the topics that generated the most discussion yesterday involved the Ready, Set, Relax event, interest and participation in which has declined over the past couple of years. The question was whether the HSA would be willing to help support the event financially with a small donation, presumably to help fund advertising or publicity (signs, flyers)...there can't be too many expenses for a night of relaxation with family, can there? The consensus was, "no." There seems to be a lot of ambivalence on this event, starting with the same old argument that something's just not right when you have to plan to relax. Other parents were concerned that if the teachers agreed to participate and teachers did not give homework on that night, would the children then have extra homework on the days preceding or following the event, in order to catch up? Others questioned whether all town groups would agree -- meaning no sports practices, no music lessons, no tutoring...doesn't seem likely anymore.
Remember that first year, when the national media came to Ridgewood to marvel at our night of relaxation? My family went to the movies that night and we were interviewed on the sidewalk by Channel 12. Another friend had TV cameras filming from the sidewalk in through her front door, to catch her family playing a board game! And I think Katie Couric or Diane Sawyer or someone like that was at the Ridgewood Library for an interview.
It appears the time for Ready, Set, Relax -- which was meant to be a symbolic event to promote family time and taking a break from over-scheduled childhood -- may have passed (even if the need for relaxation has not).
Welcome to Laurie Goodman's blog. I use this space to share news and opinions about education and schools in Ridgewood, the state of New Jersey and the nation, in addition to other issues I'm personally interested in. I invite you to share your thoughts, feelings, questions or opinions, too, by posting comments on any blog entry. Please observe basic courtesy -- keep your comments focused on issues, no personal attacks or bullying, please. Contact me directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org