Last night was parent teacher conferences at the middle school that Star, Miss Bolshoy and Lala all attend. 3 conferences in one night, whew!Star got all A’s and one B+ (remember, she moved up 2 academic levels this year!) so she is doing just fine! SO proud of her. None of her teachers had anything negative to say. She is a hard worker, asks questions, and turns in all assignments. WOOHOO!
Lala is “too quiet” and they want her to start participating more. Other than that, she is a hardworker, never asks for assistance and tries her hardest on everything she does. They “forget” that she is not from America and sometimes are shocked that she completed work that they gave her after they realized they probably should have altered an assignment for her.
Then there is Miss Bolshoy. Our report cards are on a 1-4 basis for elementary school (and 5th graders, though at the middle school are still considered elementary). 2 is below the standard. 3 is meets the standard. 4 is exceeds the standard. Until this year, I thought 4’s were difficult to obtain. My kids had gotten mostly all 3’s and Miss Bolshoy got a 4 in art (which she is amazing at). Well, this year, Miss Bolshoy got nearly straight 4’s. She is “not being challenged” and is “miles apart from her peers in maturity”. Her closest friends are 10. She is 12. Her teachers are supporting the idea of her moving ahead a grade “sooner than later”. I am torn. When she came to America, she should have been going into 4th grade based on age, but she had only just completed 2nd grade. We put her in 3rd grade. We didn’t want her in the same grade as Ali. We had educational issues with Ali and thought they were due to a lack of instruction in the orphanage. Now we know they are personal issues to Ali and not the orphanage as a whole. Miss Bolshoy was 3’10” and 42 lbs. at 10 years old, no one would know she was so young. (She's really anything BUT bolshoy!) She would be squished in the higher grades. Well Miss Bolshoy is tiny, but she is one of my most mature kids. She is incredibly bright. She tested out of ELL services after 2 years and now is a leader in her grade.
I just don’t know what to do. I want her to fit in with her peers. I want her to have friends. I want her to be challenged. But I don’t agree with skipping a child simply because they are smart. The main factor in this scenario is her age. She will graduate highschool at 19.75 years old. She will turn 20 her first month of college. She will drive her first month of high school. These are the issues that make me consider it.
My husband said “If she skips a grade, she graduates and moves out a year sooner…” and that made my heart shatter. We have already missed so much of her life, to fast forward even a day is crushing. I also LOVE that she and Lala are in the same grade and cluster. They go to activities together and look out for one another. 2 peas in a pod.
The teachers, with my permission, were going to contact the principal to see what his thoughts were. I am waiting to hear what he says before bringing this up to Miss Bolshoy. The decision will ultimately be left up to her. Well… IF we present it to her, it will be up to her. She will have the ability to nix the whole thing, but something tells me she will jump at the opportunity to move up- to appear older… bragging rights.
What would you do?
|An idea of Miss Bolshoy's size. She is second from the left next to Monkey, age 8 and Lala age 11. Ali is 5 days older and Star is 11 months older. She is quite tiny to move up. But do you hold one back simply because they are tiny? Nah.|