One of the reasons I switched careers and started my own business is so that I could be more involved with my kids' activities, able to volunteer and be generally more there for them. Up until now I really felt like that decision benefited me even more so than them. I got to do what I really love career-wise and show up at their tiny pre-school to do arts and crafts. Well, the 5 year old started half day kindergarten this year. We chose to put her in public school since the one near our house is ranked very high. It is, however overcrowded. I signed up to volunteer in the classroom once a week and today was my first day. And, now I know how crucial me having more time really will be. Now for the public service announcement: whether you are working or staying home, if you have any, and I mean ANY time to help out in the classroom, do! The eye opening experience of a public school kindergarten class with a 1:22 teacher to student ratio left me depressed, and I love my daughter's teacher. It's just no matter how much she tries there is only so much individual attention she can offer per student and that amount is miniscule. The kids are at completely different levels academically and I could see that the activities that challenged some left others bored out of their little minds. Between the teacher and me, I felt like there were not enough adults to go around, but unless a parent volunteers, the teacher is the only one there. Frankly, it really made me question everything - our decision to go with a public school, our plans for our younger daughter, even where we live. I know I've read all about the dire straights our schools are in but until you see it for yourself, you really don't know. Here is to a better day tomorrow!