School’s starting

Yesterday, my kids had their first day at school. Last night, I had mine. Yes, it was the obligatory parents’ introduction to school, where dozens of well-meaning teachers each personally must tell you in great detail the efforts they’re going through to not waste your time.

Our kids are busy people, so we really must make a heck of an effort to see that they’re not overburdened. That’s why every teacher wants each student to have a separate notebook for each class. That’s why we need to raise more money for the school teams, so the kids will have the best equipment so they can compete in even more different athletic events.

Also, parents should feel free to ask questions at any time, but not at today’s meeting, because it would mean everyone has to stay even longer, and isn’t an hour and a half long enough for a meeting?

Yes, the first-day-of-school parents’ meeting is where you can confirm that most of what kids told you about school is actually true, though the teachers make it seem like a little more planning went into it than the kids do. You also will learn about every major activity that’s planned for the entire school year, so you won’t be surprised when the kids come home with umpteen handouts reminding you about the build-your-own-plant-cell-model project.

The best moment in my meeting was when my son’s biology teacher glossed over the fact that he was actually going to teach evolution. He didn’t even call it a “controversial theory” — he just nestled it inbetween “Mendelian genetics” and “classification/dichotomous keys.” The creationists’ eyes were already so glazed over with boredom that they didn’t even seem to notice. It was a good feeling.

The other great thing about going to the parents’ day meeting is that it’s a terrific way to familiarize yourself with all the new cell-phone ringers that are out there. Who knew there were so many different cheesy synthesized versions of Fur Elise? After all, what did God create cell phones for, if not to distract creationists from discussions of Darwinian Evolution?

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