For the last two years Tillie has been in Spanish Immersion preschool at GCS. It's the school Tim went to and we're very happy there. Tillie is thriving in Spanish and enjoys it. After Tillie had been there a year Tim's school, LCS, passed a new faculty benefit where we would get a discount on tuition. It's a great school -- Kizie goes there! We can't decide which school to send Tillie to kindergarten.
-Spanish Immersion -- Learning a second language at a young age is ideal for me. Tillie seems to pick up the language easily and enjoys it.
-Separate Work/School -- When I'm at school with Tillie I'm just a mom. Tim is just "Tillie's Dad". It's nice to have that distinction. We don't know what happens "behind-the-scenes" and that's nice.
-Location -- It's a little over three miles from our house. That's nice for drop-offs/pick-ups and most of my errands are right around the school as well.
-Tillie's Pick -- She would like to keep going to her school and go to school in Spanish. (For what it's worth, Teddy's also says he wants to go to school Spanish.)
-Cost -- While the prices of tuition are about the same, without our faculty discount it's 20% more.
-1/2 Day Kindergarten -- They only offer full day kindergarten in English. I actually don't think I'd mind having her home in the afternoon, but I'd always planned on her being full day by kindergarten.
-Young 5s -- There's no young 5s in the Spanish Immersion program. Teddy's birthday is October 3 which puts him one month and 3 days past the cut-off. He'd start 3 year old preschool at 3 years 11 months. Since I started kindergarten 2 weeks before I turned 5 it's hard for me to imagine.
-Cost -- 20% off is a big deal, especially when we plan to have 4 kids.
-High School -- If they go to LCS they'd end up going to SCHS, which is the high school I went to. I really enjoyed high school and I'd love it if they went there. (Tim and my dad both went to CCHS, which is where they'd go from GCS. I've come around on the idea of my kids' going there. It probably helps that one of Tim's best friends currently works there.)
-Full Day Kindergarten -- Tillie's already been planning her school lunches for next year. I think she'd be able to handle a full day since she rarely takes afternoon naps anymore.
-Schedule -- All of her days off and vacations would be the same as Tim's.
-DK/Young 5s -- Teddy would be able to do 3 year old preschool, then do Developmental Kindergarten/Young 5s before Kindergarten. He already asks about going to school, so it would be nice to have him in something more substantial than 4 year old preschool when he's almost 5. DK is in the afternoons though. I don't love that.
-Spanish -- She'd still get Spanish class, but it's only 2 days a week for 40(?) minutes.
-Location -- It's a little over 7 miles from our house and takes double the amount of time to get there.
-Kindergarten Cost -- Since it's a full day program, kindergarten is more expensive than at GCS, even with the discount. There is a (new!) 3 day a week program next year, but if we're doing full days we'd probably choose every day.
-Work/School -- Things like parent/teacher conferences could be slightly awkward. (Maybe Tim doesn't think this, but I do.) I've subbed/worked at LCS in the past.
-Parent/Grandparent -- My sister Kizie will still be at LCS for 2 more years, so my mom and day will have a daughter and a granddaughter at the same school. (Okay, that's not really a con, I just think it's kind of funny.)
So what would you do? These are pretty much the three options:
1.) Stay at GCS.
2.) Send her to LCS
3.) Stay at GCS for kindergarten, then send her to LCS. (Laura, do you have a Spanish Immersion teacher opinion about that?)
Honestly, if cost wasn't an issue we'd send her to GCS. We love the idea of her in Spanish Immersion. (And Teddy, too. He already has some Spanish words because of Tillie.)