Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Junta General

Yesterday was the meeting with the whole school to pick the board members and go over general stuff. Things started off well and the girls were sitting quietly and eating their snacks so I was able to keep up. My husband was of course there with me and if I didn't get something he told me. Basically the superintendent over a few of the schools was there and giving a bit of a lecture on how parents should be involved with their kids. Its a huge problem here that parents just dont talk to their kids about school and seem to not care if they are even going. She also explained what the board was and that it had to be all parents and not teachers. Part of that is to make the parents be more involved. Then the picking got started. Finding people to volunteer for the positions like secretary, and treasury were easy but when they got to the president things stopped. Absolutely no one wanted to do it. This was so upsetting to me because I would love to do it but cant. Many times the moms would suggest someone and that person would decline. Including my husband... yes one of the ladies from our class looked at him and said, "cant you do it." He said he wished he could but he works a lot and wouldn't be able to commit the way he should. Again a huge "sigh" from me (on the inside of course), and I was trying to remember his words to me after the last junta while I was in tears, "its only her first year of kinder, you'll be doing all the things you want to be in a year or so, just hang in till then." As they kept asking and the director and superintendent kept repeating what the presidents roll would be, Issac could see me squirming and whining inside myself. He finally said, "Well if I agree to do it will you do most of it but Ill just join at the meetings for the translations." I wanted to kiss him right then and there. I would have never suggested it because he really does work a lot and I know the last thing he needs is a school meeting every time he is off work. As we discussed it a lady finally agreed to do it. He just smiled at me with a "next year." look.
Oh but wait now they need a vise president and no wanted that one either. So my (handsome lovely night in shining armor) hubby stood up (and you could see some of the ladies relax a bit) and said, my wife and I could do it together, and my only day off is wed so meetings would have to held then or you would have to work with my wife's language ability. Everyone was shaking their heads yes and in agreement and then he went up front with the others that had been "elected". For now I of course stayed in the back with the girls but I'm so happy that we are going to be involved and know whats going on and have some say so in it all. For the rest of the meeting I was kind of in and out with the girls but I got the gist of what was going on. First they talked about payment for the school. So here we were thinking even though it was gov school we would still have to pay a hefty inscription and monthly payment (the private inscriptions are like 1-15thousand pesos and a monthly payment of 500p) Here the total payment is to be 550p. The issue is that sometimes people just dont pay when going to gov schools and others have to pick up the slack. A gov school can not prevent a child from coming to class if their parents haven't paid (whoo hoo for that, its not the kids fault). So there was like an hour discussion over all this and thanks to Issacs wonderful idea I think the left it where everyone was happy. He suggested that they could have a few payment plans, one is that you can pay the whole amount before mid December and if you do you pay only 500p. Then if you want they can split it up so that you pay little by little each month (50p), and if you dont pay by a certain date each month you will have to pay more (60p) and the amount you pay will keep going up until you pay. This was a great idea and I'm glad I'm not the treasury who has to keep up with it all. But she was even in agreement so I think its gonna work out. This money will go to hygiene, utilities and safety and we will get a read out of what all it is spent on.
I'm not sure if I mentioned that at the junta with the teacher she gave us yet another form to fill out about our children. This form had the normal personal info about name, parents, contacts ext but also asked in depth questions about the child's behavior and how the parents normally respond. Apparently the reason classes were only 2 hours the last couple weeks was because the teachers were suppose to have an interview with each parent after class and go over these questions. Instead we just got the paper last Friday and were told to bring it back filled out. The superintendent said she noticed this and that she was going to suspend the 3 hour classes for the next 2 weeks again and make them 2 hours so the teachers would do the interviews. Are the teachers going to do it? We dont know yet. Alanas teacher was still collecting the papers from the parents and stating that this is how she had done it every year. I wish she would do an interview because I think its a great interaction between parents and teachers but we shall see.
We were also informed that there would be a total of five holiday parties that would be held at the school and the total year cost of these classes is 150p.
We were also given their menu's which is the food we are to send with them each day. We will be getting these every Friday and the kids are expected to have exactly what is written or it will be taken away. They waited till after the first two weeks to do this just to see what the parents were sending. Sure enough parents were sending their kids to school with sugary snacks and chips. So now we get to be regimented, I'm fine with this though because now I dont have to try to get creative with her lunches. ;)

Total cost: 1628p
Parties 150p
School maintenance 500p
School materials 300p
pencil bag 20p
New book bag (Im not sure on the price yet, we have been using a small one she had but her book wont fit in it once she gets it so we will have to add this on later)
Sweets (can only be bought at the school) 250p
shoes and undergarments (soriana) 185p
Falda or skirt (made by neighboor) 65p material 70p for 2 dresses made
2 pair socks (downtown) 12p
sweater (downtown) 95p

A few more things that were not at the junta. Today it looked like rain so I drove Alana to school. We picked up our new friends on the way (we have friends, lol). Then when I was talking to the teacher I was trying to explain that I wrote up some recipes for the moms and that I would bring copies sometime this week. She looked utterly confused so I laughed and said I was like talking to a kid. Well that's what I think I said, although from her response I think it came out more like, I'm like talking to my daughter. Because the teachers reply was that it was not at all like talking to Alana because Alanas spanish was really good. Although I'm laughing about this I kind of like dang my baby has already surpassed me I need to get on this.
Well I also picked up the same friend on the way home because I got carried away writing this post and left the house a little late and had to drive to pick her up also. On the way home my new friend explained how her sister lives in the states and her kids (my friends sobrinos) speak only English. My friends son wants to learn English so he can talk with his primos. I told her to come over any weekend for some coffee and we could let the kids play and let Alana tell him some words, and that also I had some videos that might help him learn words. I explained that after he learns some words then I would start communicating with him only in English and I would also ask Alana to do the same. But I feel he needs to have a grasp on some words before the communication starts.


  1. Good for you amiga! Makes me smile that you are getting involved :-)

  2. Congratulations to you and Isaac on being elected co-vice presidents! Your involvement at the Kinder and the friends that you are making are going to help you improve your Spanish.

    Again, I can't begin to tell you how proud of you I am!

  3. I can only imagine how frustrating it must be for you not to be involved in your daughter's school the way you want to. I'm glad that you will be involved this year, and your husband is right - you will only become more involved as your language skills advance.

  4. Leah-glad I could make you smile. ;)
    Leslie it means a lot for you to be proud.
    Katie- Your so right, sometimes waiting is hard but it will get better.