E is three now, which means it's time to start obsessing about finding the right school for her--even though technically, she won't be old enough to enter a kindergarten program until the 09-10 school year. I suppose she could enter a pre-K program this fall, but the thought of trying to figure out before-care, after-care and summer care really scares the hell out of me. Is it educational suicide to leave her in daycare for an extra year rather than looking for a pre-K program? Does that virtually guarantee that she won't be able to get into a kindergarten program if she isn't already enrolled in the pre-K program?
Any parents out there in the blogosphere with young children who can give me some advice? Seeing as I didn't grow up in New Orleans, I'm not real familiar with the whole private school versus parochial school comparisons here, much less the post-K charter school maze. I certainly know which schools I can't afford, and that would be, it seems, most of them. Perhaps it's crass to say so in my blog, but I can't afford to spend $15-$20K on elementary school. At least not on my salary.
Any thoughts on good schools to look at? The only possibilities that even sound within our ballpark right now are Ursuline and Holy Name of Jesus. Even though I'm not Catholic, I'd consider them. Does anyone know if it's possible to get into either of these schools without a three-year wait list? Anyone out there have kids at either school or know anyone that does?
Of course I've heard raves about Audubon and Ecole Bilingue, but my understanding is that Ecole Bilingue is only positively accepting children of French nationals right now, while everyone else goes onto a lottery/wait list. And it's an automatic lottery for Audubon, isn't it?
Are you supposed to get nauseous thinking about how to ensure a good education for your three-year-old? If so, I guess I'm a real New Orleanian now.