Tuesday, August 16, 2011

In Flux

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!).


  1. I would pray for you, but since you don't really have a home church to mention, I wouldn't know what denomination to pray in. ;) Hahaha. As a mother, as I read the blog about the schooling issue, I feel the stress building up inside me. I totally get it and am cheering you on. I am going to devour your blog, I have always had a serious case of wanderlust, and for now, your blog is going to have to fulfill my cravings. I just wanted to pop in and let you know your blog is my new favorite fall series. ~Noelle

  2. I'm sure it will work out for you guys, too bad it has to be so stressfull but it will pass and I have to believe the boys will be fine wherever they land. On a happier not (I hope) I saw the Penske moving van parked in front of your house early this morning and lights on tonight so your tenants are making themselves at home. Will try and stop in and introduce myself over the weekend.
    Good luck.

  3. My heart goes out to you all, as well as my prayers, thoughts and good wishes. I can only imagine the stress but am sure it will work out somehow for you. Good luck

    Aunt Cheryl

  4. While I always like to think this too shall pass some things can be very painful as they pass and this seems to be one of them. Dad and I feel so bad for all of you. But we know you will pull it together like you always do and Quin and Berk WILL get into school together and a few weeks form now you will be laughing about it! But I still wish we could be there to give you a hug.


  5. You both write so effectively-- I feel as if I am g inside your apartment or inside Berkley's head as he tries to make his way through the interview. Brave, doesn't even begin to cover it. This is an adventure you and the boys will remember forever. Thinking of you and sending you virtual hugs. You can always say you are members (through friendship) at the Congregational Church in Dartmouth. So what if some of those details get lost in translation. We'll vouch for you. Miss you! Lara

  6. Wow . . . we are most certainly rooting for you all. Sending you good thoughts to get through the stress of this process. Remember: it wouldn't be an adventure if you could be certain of the outcome. It WILL work out, I am sure, but we are thinking of you and sending love while you deal with the uncertainty. xoxo Lee

  7. We are all thinking of you as you try to manage the comlexities of living overseas with two young boys and all the joys,anxiety and happiness that involves. It is an adventure and hopefully as the days go on things will start to fall in place.

    Tell the boys Aunt Fish said Hi and that we love them

  8. Thanks all for the supportive comments! It means so much to us to have so many people rooting for us halfway around the world. We miss you all!