Since my son hasn´t even turned 2 yet, thinking about possible primary schools is not too high up my priority list. This is not to say that I don´t think it is important, it just feels like something that is still so far away that I don´t bother to worry about it yet. However, recently on playdates and with the neighbours I discovered that apparently, I am the only one who is not worrying about it yet.
Are the kids of the playdates or are our neighbours kids much older than L? Nope, they are either the same age or just a bit younger. And apparently, those parents don´t think that it is still so far away and “picking the right school” has turned into a very frequent topic of conversation. Which school is better, differences between public, semi-private and private schools, bilingual French, German or English schools, schools in the neighborhood or further away having to take the school bus… are just a few topics of worry. And especially, what if your kid doesn´t get in the school of your choice? Apparently, there is some kind of system with postal codes and areas, I have no clue how it works but it´s supposed to decide who can go to what school in the city.
Maybe the discussion here starts a bit earlier because kids are only 3 years old when they start primary school, so in theory next year around this time we will have to take that decision. But how I can think about SCHOOLS when I still have this little baby? (Ok, maybe not baby, but just a toddler) Seriously, schools sound for bigger kids! So yeah, I guess I am just in denial stage because I am not really on board with this 3-year-start-primary-school concept in Spain. I mean seriously, 3??? Also, it´s serious school then: from 9am to 5pm, what the heck??
Another big discussion point is the set-up of the schools, I am used to the fact that primary schools and high schools are different entities so I am not too worried about the fact that public schools are only primary schools whereas semi-private and private schools are primary and high school in one, meaning the kids can stay there until they are going to university. A lot of the worriers bring that up as the biggest argument against the public schools. But seriously, do I want to make a decision based just on that, who says we will still be in Spain in 10 years?
There are some schools next to our house (of which one is supposed to be a decent public bilingual English school) so I guess next year when this mama is ready to get her head out of the sand (or probably, not ready but will be forced to), we will take a look there and at some other schools. (My childhood memories included walking / biking to school so I would like for the bichin to also have that and then there´s the bus ride required for other schools which makes these super long school days even longer, and friends in the neighbourhood, so I am obviously have a preference for something close!). Until then, I am going to stay in my happy bubble and ignore the fact that tiny humans have to go to school way too soon.