Who knows where we will live when it is time for Vince to start school. We tend to change our minds a lot and we seem unable to decide on what continent to live. Therefore, I decided I need to pull my head out of the sand and look into the options here in Graz too.
I had an appointment with the elementary school at Hirten-Kloster yesterday. I think I liked it. I met with the principal who seemed wise and caring. I especially liked how she told me to listen to my gut feel too. That seemed like she could actually relate and understand the million pros and cons that needs to be decided on.
The school is close to us, almost closer to the one Vince ‘normally’ belongs too. It is an integrative class with 23 kids with 4 or 5 with some type of issue it could be a medical diagnoses or a social issue. There are 2 teachers at all times except for religion class, which he and the other Evangelic kids (Austria is catholic) would be taken out of and tought separate based on their religion.
They have afternoon care which would include meals. In Austria no students get any meals, it is all to bring from at home or is some cases to buy. (In Sweden it is a given that each kid gets a meal served in school).
There is also the great advantage of that all therapies are in-house at this place, and it is a well-known organization, with many years of experience. The therapists work closely with the parents, which is important to me. Lots of communication both ways is a norm.
Therapies would be decided based on Vincent, but with the underlying goal of strengthening weaknesses in combination of working with strengths. Sounded good to me.
My questions were also about the educational level and how that will be adjusted to Vincent’s needs and performance. According to the principal that is adjusted throughout the school year. I like this, as I REFUSE to put a label or a fix plan out before he even had a chance to show what he can.
Some not so good things are that there are only four max five places available. Also the after school car program has limited space open, and they have to take the kids from their Kindergarten first. The school is also rather big, it seemed a bit complex with the build up of the different houses etc. It is also only to 4th grade, but that will be the case for most schools we look at.
I am also going to visit a Montessori school, a ‘regular’ school and one more integrative school. All help and thoughts and questions to consider are greatly appreciated. I am feeling very lost!
Vince will start school Sept 2012 if we stay in Austria, so I have about 6 months before we would need to do the sign up…