Recently our daughter, E, was accepted to the magnet school that P attends. His school doesn't take kids below third grade, so next fall would be her fist opportunity to go. At first I was torn about where she should go next fall...the magnet school is GREAT, but her current school is cute and supportive and has an amazing climate. At first I couldn't even decide whether to apply for the magnet school because her current school is so nice.
Now, however, I'm glad we did. Her current school is still really nice, but they don't know what to do with her. They can't decide if she's a tiny adult, capable of carrying out her complex projects on her own, or if she's an average child who will thrive on the standard curriculum. There's nothing in between totally independent self-study and a completely typical school experience. The magnet school will understand her asynchronous development and will help her get to where she needs to be.
Still, as happy as I am about her acceptance to the magnet school, I still feel a bit of loss. Another kid, another school that wasn't a great fit. And although we won't be flaming out of her current school the way we left our son's old school, there's still a feeling of loss. It's another reminder of how our kids aren't quite typical. They attend the gifted magnet school not because it's some great honor or because it's an ego trip for us as their parents...they do it because their home schools aren't great options.
I wish I could send all three of my kids to a neighborhood school. I wish I could see P and E walking their little sister C into the building. I wish I could talk to a kindergarten teacher who tells me that C is just like P was at that age. I wish I could join one PTO, have one winter concert, go to one parent-teacher conference night. Having kids in two schools just reminds me that regular neighborhood schools can't handle my kids.