Friday, February 6, 2009

They Are In!

With my computer problems, I haven't had much time to write about the bigger kids (Shantal and Spencer) and the procedure for finding a school for next year.

This is MY interpretation of how things work. Meaning from what I have understood through my terrible German.

Here in Germany, the Elementary School goes until the 4th Grade. Once you are in the 5th Grade, you change to either the Gymnasium, The Real Schule, The Gesamtschule or the Hauptschule. They are all basically ranked by The best down to the worst and depending on your grades from 1 - 4 grades, will qualify you for certain schools.

Changing to these schools isn't so simple. Not only do you have to have a recommendation of which school you qualify for, you also have to go and FIND your school you will be attending. For example, Spencer. He got a Gymansium Recommendation, which by the way is the best school here in Germany.....for the smart kids. I am such a proud mom. laughs. Anyway, just because he got a Gymnasium Recommendation, we still had to go out and find a Gymnasium that he likes. There are a good 8 within a half hour radius. We went to their open house days and checked them all out. Spencer decided which one he wanted to go to. But still, not that simple. We had to take Spencer's Birth Certificate, His Report Cards from 1 - 4 grades and the Recommendation Letter to the school of his choice and he was interviewed. Yes, he had to apply to a school. And then the school decides if they will accept him or not.

Spencer had his interview last Thursday, January 29th. And after the 1/2 hour interview, he was told right then and there he was in. He would be a student in that school starting in August.

He told me that night he was very happy he got in.

Then there is Shantal. She got a Real Schule Recommendation. That is the second best school. It is hard, because one knows not to compare the two kids. But it is so hard when they are in the same class at school and both got shoved into the German School System at the same time. I am very proud of Shantal and how she has adjusted since being here. It has been the hardest on her.

Well, I should mention that the Gesamtschule is a mixture school. Kids with any recommendation can go there. And this is where we chose would be good for Shantal. And as we did all the tours of all the schools, this is the school Shantal liked the best.

Shantal had her interview last Monday, January 26th. They told us we would hear by mail the following week whether she was in or not. The letter came yesterday. I was afraid to open it for her. This is a very hard school to get into. Roughly 240 students apply and they only had 160 openings. But she got in. She was also very excited when she came home from school.

So now both kids are in the schools of their choice. Ends up that these two schools are a few blocks from each other. So they will still ride the public bus together to school. And if I need to drive them for any reason, it works out prefect that they are so close to each other. But they will be in different schools. And this is something we really have wanted for our kids. They need it.

This is a great week for our family!


Julianna said...

how exciting that they both got their first choice of schools! sounds like it will be a great situation for everyone all around

Kristin said...

Tam! I am SO SO SO happy for them!

Kristin said...

Tammy, it is so good to hear that things are working out. It will be good to get them out of that school where they have had so much trouble. I also understand about them needing to go to separate schools. Max and Payton are going to different schools this year, and it is very good for them. I really hope and pray that these new places will be good for Shantal and Spencer.

Theriault Family said...

congrats! wow... it's like college, but in the 5th grade. they'll be all practiced up by the time college comes around.

PapaScott said...

Christopher is in the 3rd grade, so we're exactly one year yway from this decision. We're not looking forward to it, and are seriously thinking about "none of the above" (i.e. Waldorfschule).

J said...

Congrats on the kids getting what they wanted.

I am a bit confused, though.

I thought that both you and Gardner met in Germany as missionaries. Yet you say you speak terribe German? Doesn't make sense to me. From what I've read, Mormon missionaries are supposed to speak the language very well.

March 2007