Ok, I need an opinion and to bounce some thoughts before I post them to my school forum...
I recently questioned the decision that boys can wear shorts during warm months, but girls cannot.
This is the response that was posted:
OMG....Does every school that opens have this much bickering...I'm almost sorry that the school is giving the parents any say in the way things are done because a lot of these emails are a parent complaining about one stupid thing or another. I have 2 girls and am not complaining that they can't wear shorts. They have skirts and jumpers. Should all the parents who have sons going to this school email and complain that they can't wear those items? This is ridiculous. You will never get everyone to agree on everything and so what? Some of you parents need to wake up to the real world. Just be grateful that we are getting this great chance at something new in our community and if you don't like the choices we are given, then go back to the public schools where your kids can wear whatever they want....
and this is the reply that I have not yet posted:
"OMG....Does every school that opens have this much bickering"
I'd guess that, yes they probably do. With 240 kids and families coming together, and each parent sure that his or her child's needs take precedence over any other, well of course we're going to disagree about things. Shorts vs. skirts isn't the heart of the issue; it's a reflection of an attitude that is sadly prevalent in most schools, one that tends to draw a clear line between boys and girls and rarely for the better.
I have stood in defense of this school and the very concept it's based on countless times to my friends and family who question whether we've made the right choice. I believe in the school and in it's stated goals. For a school that claims it will "prepare them for the most challenging opportunities as they continue their education and life preparation" and teach them "acceptance of others without regard to race, religion or other differences", this doesn't seem like a good start to me. There are societal and cultural reasons why American boys do not wear skirts and dresses. There are no such limitations on girls in shorts in our culture, so I don't see why there should be in our school. If there is this sort of differentiation right from the get-go in the uniforms, then where else might the same preconceptions affect my daughter's education and to what effect? I don't know, and I don't want to have to find out the hard way.
I can only assume and hope that I am just as determined as the next parent to be sure that I'm doing everything I can to ensure that my daughter grows to be strong, confident and proud of who and what she is. You know that song from "Annie Get Your Gun" that goes "Anything you can do I can do better; I can do anything better than you?" Well, that's what runs through my head every time my kid says she wants to be the "first woman _________" when she grows up. She's only six and she already makes the distinction between doctors and woman doctors or astronauts and woman astronauts. It breaks my heart that already she dreams of being the best ~woman~ astronaut instead of just the best astronaut.
I wish that it were possible to express my questions, thoughts and concerns, and maybe even discuss them, without someone saying "sit down, shut up, and be grateful for what you have." That is hardly productive, and certainly not an attitude that I want my child to learn. While I am grateful, I will still question, poke and prod, and do all that I can to be sure that our daughters have every choice, option, and opportunity available to our sons.
I guess I just need to step back before I post it and make sure that this is really a can I want to open and that I'm not just over-reacting...