Oh what a day. It started this morning with the realisation Freddie wouldn’t be going to school and needed to see a doctor. Followed closely by a text to my mum, at some ungodly hour before 8am, asking her if she could come to look after Freddie AND pick up Izzy after kindy as usual. Eeccchhh. We all went to the doctors, glands up on both kids but no sign of strep throat, phew. Off to kindy with Izzy, dropped Freddie home just as mum arrived, and sped up to school for work.
It’s the last full week of school, and life there is predicatably crazy. I was immediately relieved that Freddie was at home, the scene was of happy chaos. Just as I found my class I had a message that the Principal was looking for me. How the hell do those words still have the power to make me sweat?? Up I trudged to the office and was waved in.
Well, Principal had some great news. She’d had a meeting with someone from the Education Dept, and it had gone really well and she’d learnt alot. You know, sitting there listening to Principal tell me about it, about how she was preparing for my child to start school, I had to count my lucky stars that this is where I was. Where we are. Where Izzy will be.
When we were checking out the schools in our area for Freddie (we had four to choose from, all decile 9 and 10) we heard lots of things about our school – it’s the hippie school, it’s where those sorts of kids go, it not for everyone. Schools sold themselves on their IT programs, their open plan, state of the art classes. They talked about their plans for expansion, their dress code, their sporting prowess. The other Principals told us about their teacher’s career paths, their assessments and test stats, the expectation that our child enrol in extra-curricular activities provided through the school. We heard all about how kids with special needs usually go to this ‘other’ school. On more than one occassion we were told those sorts of families tend to choose this ‘other’ school. Then we went to this other school. We met the Principal and for the first time we heard someone talk entirely about THE KIDS! We heard that every kid matters. That no child would miss out on ANYTHING due to lack of finances. We were told, as matter of fact, that we could pay our fees in installments if we wished, or if we needed help paying – that would be provided. It was made very clear that every child was welcome here. We heard that kids were allowed to be kids at this school, and we liked it. We saw that the roll was diverse, it represented real life in NZ. Without any doubt, we picked this school – and today, again, I was sooooooo happy that we had.
So first thing next term we will meet again and hammer out the details. I am totally confident we are in the best place. Honestly, Izzy couldn’t be more fortunate – we’ve had the most amazing kindy team support us and now prepare to head in to a school that is determind to do everything they can to ensure Izzy is safe, supported and able to succeed. Just like every other kid that walks through their doors.
If there’s one thing I want my kids to understand – it’s that EVERYONE matters.
The other cool news is that we have the paper work for Izzy’s name change (birth cert). This is the first step in changing her official documents, and is pretty straight forward. All we need is a JP to witness our proof of identity and signitures, and Izzy can get her new name on her birth cert. From there we apply for her passport, with the new birth cert, a letter from her psychiatrist and a declaration from us, she will then be in possession of an identity document with her new name AND affirmed gender, with no mention of either of the old! Izzy will start school with an official document stating she is FEMALE!!!!!
Now THAT will be cause for celebration!