Prequel to RG’s Changed Circustances–RD and the School for Very Bright Children
December 22, 2008
About the time our daughter was attending first grade, it became apparent to her parents that she was a very bright little girl. We lived about a mile or two away from a private school for highly intelligent children. It was sort of the Harvard (or Yale or Princeton or Stanford, if you prefer) of private grade schools.
We considered sending our daughter to this school and began by having them test her to see if she was bright enough to be accepted.
The director of the school happily told us that Random Daughter qualified. “Your daughter is a very bright child,” she said. We complacently basked in the glory of being the parents of such a prodigy.
However, we never enrolled her in this school for two reasons:
First, it would have been expensive to send our child to this school (almost as expensive as sending her to one of those “Ivy League” colleges) and we were very poor at the time. Even with the financial aid they offered, it would have been very difficult for us.
Second, we moved. First, we moved closer to the high school where I taught. Then I was “RIF’d” (victim of a “Reduction in Force,” jargon for a layoff caused by the failure of a school budget election. I became angry–I have a bad temper–and looked for a job in Oregon and found one. (It turned out that if I had stayed in Washington I would have been rehired the next fall when they came up with money to hire the people they had first released.)
It would not have been convenient or even practical to send RD to that school, especially if she would have had to make a daily commute from Portland, Oregon to an area north of Seattle.
As a consequence, RD attended public schools for her entire grade school and high school career, though eventually she attended Oberlin, a moderately exclusive (though perhaps very dangerous, not to mention very expensive) private college. Among other consequences of attending Oberlin:
She roomed with and fell in love with another Oberlin student, who to this day is her Out of Law partner. (I guess that was the dangerous part. Would you want your daughter to marry “one of them?” Even more dangerous, after a week for the idea to settle in, Mrs. Random and I said, “Whatever.” I guess it RD picked dangerous parents as well as choosing to attend a dangerous college. Some children have little sense.)