Posting here may be light for the next few days as we attempt to work out logistical issues related to the boys’ schooling. When we first found out we were coming here, we did an extensive search of the international schools and finally found one with a reasonable commute and space for both of the boys. However, we were told that there was no way to officially secure a place until we came here for testing and an interview. That’s why we’re here so long before the start of Doug’s grant – which doesn’t begin until September.
When we landed, we arrived at our new apartment to find out that in the time we waited to come here, at least two children slipped in front of Berkley, who is now number 2 on the waiting list. To make matters (almost) worse, the boys were wound up from jet lag yesterday and put on a less than stellar performance during the interview (let’s just say that it was mentioned that Berkley had served an in-school suspension last year – just the impression you want to make when you’re trying to get in a school). For a moment, we thought neither of them would be invited to attend. Thankfully, Quin has secured a spot, but no such luck with Berkley. We now have 7 days to decide what to do with this school (the American International School – make a deposit for Berkley and hope he gets in?), so the clock is ticking.
After some frantic phone calling yesterday afternoon, we found one school (the Norwegian Christian Academy) that has places for both boys. However, by public transportation, the commute would be over an hour and a half – each way. For obvious reasons, this is unworkable. Nonetheless, we’re off to the interview there this morning (we’re a bit nervous about the fact that we had to leave the – what church do you attend – question blank!); maybe with places in hand at another school, we’ll have more leverage with the first.
We’ve also looked into online schools, but they would require a serious time commitment from me that’s not really possible if I want to make progress on my research during my sabbatical (and it’s probably not temperamentally feasible for me either!).
So, as of now, we’ve put some calls in with the Fulbright folks, and they’re working on it for us. We’re hoping they can either: a) pull some strings and help get Berkley into our first choice school, b) arrange a car service for the boys (it’s actually fairly direct by car), or c) move us to a different apartment (it’s much more feasible for Doug to do an hour commute twice a day to Lingnan from a different university). The long and short of it right now is that there’s not much exploring going on as we frantically try to make this work; we’ll keep you posted on how it plays out, but cross your fingers for us (or maybe say a prayer or two as we head off to the Christian school!).