Starting Monday, Hemenway School is going to be trialing a new morning drop-off system that allows parents to drop kids at school as early as 8.40am.
Until now, the earliest we've been allowed to drop our kids at school in the morning has been 9am, with the school day officially starting at 9.15am. This has meant a 15-minute crush of cars and school buses stretching the length of Water Street, clogging traffic for regular folks and causing impatience and grief for those of us just trying to get our kids to school promptly so that we can get on with our work day.
I'm lucky enough to be able to split the morning drop-off duties with my husband meaning that, on my off-days, I can actually get to my office in Waltham before 9.45am. To complicate matters, I also have to leave the office most nights by 5.15pm in order to pick the kids up from their after-school program by 6pm (or pay $25 per kid per every 5 mins late!)
Fortunately, I also work for a company that "gets" the challenges of the working parent. I'm not much of a slacker either, meaning I'm on email way before taking the kids to school and also in the evenings to make up for the hours spent dropping them off and picking them up. And to assuage the guilt I feel about being constantly late to the office and then leaving early.
Advancing drop-off time by 20 mins will make a HUGE difference. I'm sure that, like me, working parents across Nobscot are cheering. As are the neighbors, shopkeepers, bus drivers and everyone else whose mornings are spent inching along Water Street at the pace of a comatose snail. I know my kids will be just fine with it too—it means 20 more minutes of play and social time with their school pals before knuckling down to the business of learning.
I'm seriously crossing my fingers and toes that this two-week trial will be a success and that the PTO (who is sponsoring the trial), school and Framingham Police Department can figure a way to make it a permanent fixture.
Samantha McGarry is a working Mom, juggling her family, career and domesticity (ha!) one crazy day at a time—with a smile on her face. You can find more over her blogs over at Keeping the Glass Half Full.