Will Move For School

Just relaxing with my morning coffee and paper

Just relaxing with my morning coffee and paper

My 9 year old daughter reluctantly started school last week at a new school, much to my dismay. I’ve been embroiled in a battle with the Lakewood City School District for the past two weeks over my daughter’s education and overall well being. I’m sure at this point, they assume they’re victorious in said battle. Well, I’m not quite done yet.

I’ve written thoughtful letters, phoned principals, administrators and anyone else I could think to reach out to, and even obtained a dr’s note from my child’s pediatrician stating that relocation to a new school will have adverse affects on her both academically and socially. I’ve included a link to the original letter and dr’s note here…https://thebroadsside.com/2015/08/22/dear-lakewood-city-schools/
Guess what? Nobody cares. That’s really the bottom line here. My problem presented itself less than a week before school started. I was in Chicago on business preparing to engage in a 80s lip sync battle to the death while outfitted in a super hideous prom dress, but that’s a story for another time. Footloose would have to wait because my daughter’s school was calling to inform me that since I moved two miles away and was now four minutes and twelve seconds from the school, she’d need to transfer. Wait… What? Why would they be letting me know about this move less than a WEEK before classes resume? That’s asinine, right? I registered online at least a month prior and clearly indicated a big ‘YES’ check mark on the change of address portion of the form, as well as plugged on the new information.

Moving is hard

Moving is hard

We were all registered for the day care program before and after school at Horace Mann, which is the school she’s attended since Kindergarten. I wasn’t about to let this go without a fight. I personally emailed Superintendent Patterson, but apparently he thinks it’s acceptable to ignore an angry woman. Oh, that poor man. That was a big mistake! I made an appointment to meet with the director of student services at the School Board offices to discuss my daughter’s future and provide documentation from her dr. When I arrived, I was told that she was “out of the building”. Well, that’s convenient! I certainly wasn’t going anywhere without talking to SOMEONE.
After waiting for an extended period of time, they finally sent the assistant superintendent (that doesn’t even sound like a real thing) in to speak with me and my daughter. Would you like to know how to piss a forty something year old soccer mom off instantly? Send in the most gorgeous creature on the planet to talk to me while I blot the gross, puffy bags under my eyes with a tissue. That was super helpful. I was relieved I wasn’t wearing sweatpants, but nothing this pencil skirt and stiletto wearing slice of perfection said even registered. It was clear she didn’t care, and I’m not even entirely sure she’s not a genetically engineered robot woman created to make the rest of us feel inferior. She showed little emotion as my daughter sobbed uncontrollably as she was told that our 11th hour attempts had failed and she’d need to start her first day of school at Emerson the next day.
forward my mail to 1215 1/2 West Clifton Blvd

forward my mail to 1215 1/2 West Clifton Blvd

I was promised that someone would be reviewing my request and dr’s note, but the entire week went by without any contact from the administration. During my chats with different officials, assistant robot woman suggested maybe I should “just move closer” to Horace Mann and the problem would be resolved. That’s a brilliant plan coming from someone who’s clearly such a stickler for the rules! I’ll just pick up my entire life, break a lease, give no notice and pay thousands of dollars to relocate two miles. Why didn’t I think of this sooner?

I decided that I would have to scale down significantly if I was to put this moving plan into action. As any normal person would do, I called one of my besties and kindly asked if he’d like to build me a new dwelling fashioned out of cardboard boxes. His answer… “Why wouldn’t I want to do that?” You see, logically speaking if I moved right into the school parking lot, that would definitely be close enough. Am I right? And how convenient is that? Thanks for the amazing suggestion, assistant robot woman! This is going to be awesome. I’ll be sure to send you all an invite to my housewarming party! Just don’t buy me anything that requires electricity, as my new home doesn’t have outlets. I’m really glad we were able to work this whole thing out! Should I start sending my daughter back to Horace Mann on Monday since we’re SO close to the school now? I’ll be waiting for your call.
Your move, Lakewood.

14 Responses to “Will Move For School”

  1. 1 Erin
    August 22, 2015 at 3:34 pm

    I just stumbled upon this on Facebook. I am not affiated with Lakewood schools nor do I know the “robot woman” you speak of. That said–I understand your concern for your child. I was once a single mom in Lakewood with one child and had to move as well. However, I knew of the MANY elementary schools located there. I asked for the school boundaries to make sure my new apartment would allow my child to continue attending the same school. I knew how traumatic it would have been if she had to switch schools. I am sorry you have not been shown understanding in this situation. However, I can’t help but be majorly rubbed the wrong way when reading this. I think insulting the way a woman looks and dresses goes against everything we are trying to teach young girls today. You could have gotten your point across without woman shaming and name calling. I would certainly take you more serouisly without that part of it.

    • 2 Jen
      August 22, 2015 at 4:21 pm

      Erin, I’m truly sorry that my comments about this woman were misinterpreted. I was in no way shaming her appearance. In fact, it’s 100% the opposite. She’s quite possibly the most strikingly beautiful woman I’ve ever seen in person. I wanted to be her! She’s honestly about as close to perfect as it gets. I didn’t care much for her unsympathetic demeanor, but I’m sure she has to deal with a lot of stress on a regular basis. Please accept my sincere apology in that regard. If anything, I want to take her shopping with me to pick out all my new outfits.

    • 3 Michael
      August 24, 2015 at 1:23 pm

      As I read through this story, it appears you as the mother do not hold yourself accountable for any of your actions. In fact you are looking to blame everyone but yourself for your move. I’m sure if you notified the school in ample time, Lakewood would have been a little more willing to work with you and your daughter. Instead, you chose not to make anyone aware of your new address until the school was notified via returned mail. If your daughter’s schooling was that much of a priority, maybe you could’ve handled things better on your end. Quit looking for a scapegoat and own your decisions that affected your daughter.

      • 4 Jen
        August 24, 2015 at 1:36 pm

        Actually, I did notify them over a month ago when I registered. What I have an issue with is the fact that she was actively registered at her old school up until the Thursday before school started and they chose to move her at the last minute. We had already arranged for the pre and after care program as well. I also have a problem with the fact that they set an appointment with someone who wasn’t even at the offices, didn’t respond to emails or phone calls and the overall lack of follow through.

        I’m not playing the victim here. I’ll fully admit that I should have notified the school that I was moving in April. I just didn’t realize that was a necessity since I was moving 2 miles. I’m not blameless here, but the last minute bs is unacceptable. Why have an online system in place for registration if the information you submit is neglected? I understand your views completely. I stand by the fact that they let this slip through the cracks and then wouldn’t address it. Thanks for you comments.

  2. 5 Vanessa
    August 22, 2015 at 7:46 pm

    This is horrible! Dr. Waters isn’t helping?? I look forward to seeing you Monday morning!!

  3. 7 Jen
    August 24, 2015 at 8:25 am

    Thanks, Andy… But dear lord, no. Moving is the worst and it’ll be a long time before I do that again. I currently am enjoying my kick-ass lake view at my condo. It was a huge upgrade and I’m really happy there. Thanks again, though!

  4. 8 David
    August 24, 2015 at 8:26 am


    This story was brought to my attention and after howling out loud throughout the story, I decided I had to go back and read some more of your missives. I am happy to report that while my face hurts from smiling/laughing, you are quite possibly the wittiest person I have come across. I have been told for years that I have a gift for writing and have missed my calling, but you truly have the gift. I will be eagerly awaiting your next post and pulling for you and your daughter in your righteous struggle……in fact, I have an idea for your next move.

    • 9 Jen
      August 24, 2015 at 8:30 am

      Thanks, David! It’s amazing to me how many people don’t get it! It’s creating quite an uproar. The Desperate Housewives of a Lakewood are a mean bunch. It’s spectacular!

  5. 10 David
    August 24, 2015 at 9:12 am

    I’m sure the claws are out, but few things bring more joy than infuriating the masses! Fight on!

  6. August 25, 2015 at 11:05 am

    Whenever a person is moving, it is up to that person to make sure that the new house they are moving to is zoned for the school that they want their child to attend. If it isn’t, you need to contact the school prior to moving and request a zone variance. I feel for your daughter however, this is not the schools fault.

    • August 25, 2015 at 11:17 am

      Yes, nobody is disputing that this is the case. I’ve acknowledged that I was unaware of that and owned up to that mistake, which is stated in the original letter. I’m not upset about that. I’m upset about the fact that my child was a registered student at the old school up until the Thursday before class resumed. They had to take her OUT of the computer system, transfer her file and make room at the new school. When you complete online enrollment, you specifically have to fill out an entire separate page if you’ve moved… Which I did. What happened to that information? I’ve never claimed to be blameless, but it’s not a black and white situation here. They clearly let my address change slip through the cracks. Instead of uprooting her (we didn’t have a decision on which school she’d be attending until Mon at 4 pm), they should have handled it differently. Also, I was told that the director of student services (the same one I scheduled an appointment with and she didn’t show up) would be contacting me to try and get this resolved during the first week of school.

  7. August 25, 2015 at 11:11 am

    I feel bad for the situation you are in but when you move, even if it is 1/2 mile, you need to check and make sure the school zoning will remain the same. If not, your child may have to switch schools. With our district, you can go on their website and type in an address and it will tell you exactly what schools you are zoned for. I understand that you feel the school waited until the last minute but, you should have known prior to moving if there was going to be an issue. Good luck.

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About the Broad

A humorous look at dating in your mid-thirties and the other hilarious things that happen around us on a daily basis.

August 2015
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