It's a parenting rite of passage I guess, and I'm just getting thrown in and figuring this all out - or trying to at least.
For the last year and a half, I've willingly and regularly attended the PTO meetings at Trevor's school. I figure it's my job/duty as a parent (especially a SAHM), since it's at night during the week I don't usually have a conflict and since I'll have a kid at that school for the next 11 years (yikes!!) I should really get involved and find out what's going on around there.
His school has about 450 students, and at most I've seen 15 parents in that room, and 3 teachers. I don't understand. The 15 moms (I've seen a dad only once that I recall) are the same 15 moms that run all the events/fundraisers/programs that are needed/expected/desired by the remaining 400 families/teachers. And yet, half the people in the room don't fully know what the purpose/goal of the PTO is... and the rest of the 450 families surely don't. It's no wonder that fundraisers are only vaguely successful when most of the people being asked for money don't know what it's for. The apathy and lack of involvement/interest absolutely boggles me.
What I don't know is how to fix it, or even help it much. I'm guessing that sooner than later, I will be jumping into a bunch of those committees (not that I haven't done a few already) and I'll be on the PTO board sooner than I expected. If I want the best for my kids and their education, what other choice is there? But once I'm part of the board and the committees... then what? How does it change so that more people are aware and involved? Ugh....I think I just found my new full-time (not for profit) job. Oh wait, I already have one of those!!
On the other topic (sorry, no logical or entertaining segue's here!), Trevor got invited to his first play-date at a classmates house. To this point, we haven't known many of the kids in his class very well, other than getting invited to their birthday parties (that topic is worthy of a whole seperate post!). I spend time each week in his classroom helping out, so I know many of the kids, but I don't know the parents. Before he started school last year, we hung out with a group of my friends and their kids where the mom's were all friends so we were all together always. So, this whole notion of "Hi, I've never met you but sure my kid can come to your house and play for 3 hours without me there and then you can drive him home is fine" is kinda weird for me.
But T came home with a note that E would like him to come play sometime soon. And he talks about E alot and they play soccer against each other and I know he wants to go play (and I don't want him to be left out of this part of childhood), so I called and talked to E's mom and after deciding that after school is already rushed, we agreed that T would go there and play on Saturday afternoon. Why there? Because they invited us, and because a classmate lives around the corner that they are both friends with. So Saturday came, and we called to say we'd be over soon.... except no one was home. All afternoon! Talk about sad Trevor. We left a message but didn't hear back til Monday. So aside from dealing with T's heartbreak over the lack of play-date, I still haven't fully done this whole "play-date" thing and am still over-anticipating it (in true me-style) until this Saturday. I'm not an over-bearing, worrywart, helicopter type parent by nature....but still, this is uncharted territory for me and him!