Three school runs and so so fed up : (((90 Posts)
I'm so fed up tonight. I have five children. Three are at different schools all over town. I am managing in the morning because one of the schools lets me use the school grounds to park and drop off. It's hard work but it works.
But the evening is a disaster. First I have to drive to the infants. Put baby in sling and walk toddler 5 minutes to the school. Then 5 minutes back to the car. Then all back in and off to second school. Park up, baby back in sling, wake up toddler who has now fallen asleep and has a tantrum. Walk to second school for second child. Back to the car with screaming toddler and often crying baby by now. All back in car. Drive 5 minutes home and drop off eldest because she can't fit in the car. Back in and drive 10 minutes to pick up eldest at third school. By this time youngest children are usually grumpy. The reason I am so fed up is that the school have been lovely to let me park in the grounds in the morning. It helps enormously as I don't have to get the little ones out of the car. But tonight with the two youngest fast asleep I buzzed and asked if I could do the same as in the morning. They said only today but I will have to always park 5 minutes away in future. They said lots of parents have children at different schools. I do understand that but three schools with five children including a baby and toddler. And having to park up twice and wake them up? If I could park up in the school in the afternoon they could carry on sleeping.
I have only just put my daughter in the third school this week after a school appeal failed. But I just don't think I can do this every day. My kids are crying too much and I am frazzled. Am I being unreasonable to think they might allow me to park in the grounds. All my children are sitting at home as I write crying from it all. I think I am going to take her out tomorrow.
My children's school won't allow parents to park in the school car park unless ere are exceptional circumstances. I don't think having younger children would count as exceptional. Really, from the school's point of view, if they allow you to, then they have to allow other parents with younger siblings too.
I do appreciate it must be every hard doing 3 school runs though. I understand you've tried to appeal for a place but why 3 schools? Could you homeschool one of them until a place comes up in the same school as the sibling?
How old are the children? Are any of them big enough to travel independently (seniors) or at least to leave school and come and find you parked up (juniors)? How did the three schools situation arise?
It sounds very difficult, but it's not the school's fault and if they allow you to park in the grounds they are opening the flood gates for everyone to do it.
You need to car pool with other parents. Ask at the school gates if someone could pick your dcs and in return you pick up some of theirs from the other schools. Swap every other week.
It's doable, but you have to think laterally, and share the load with other parents who are also tied for time.
Yes YABU, because otherwise they would have to let everyone with a baby/toddler park there, and once they were allowed to park there, everybody else would find a reason why they should to.
Must be tough for you though.
I wouldn't press it, you're very lucky that they let you into the grounds in the morning, very few schools would do that. Mostly parents aren't allowed to drive into the school at all.
Could you ask another parent or child minder to collect one of the children?
How old is the child you pick up last? Couldn't they walk to the front of school and wait so they can jump in when you get there?
Obviously a school isn't going to let you park on site to pick up your child. There are a lot of parents who feel equally entitled to park on site due to siblings I'm sure. You are lucky they let you in the morning.
It does sound stressful though.
Can I ask how come 3 ended up at 3 schools?
If your oldest is able to stay at home while you pick up the last one can they not walk home? If it's only a 5 minute drive it can't be that far. Perhaps they can walk back with another child/kind parent?
Can you keep the oldest one in the car and leave the other one at home (I presume with dh?) so that oldest one can run and collect third one while you stay in parked car with sleeping little ones?
I really appreciate the replies and I know it's not just me. School runs are always stressful. And I'm not any real exception. I'm just so tired. Plus up all night with baby I'm just low. The child I leave at home is only just 7 and the roads are hugely busy. So she can't walk home. I don't even like leaving her alone. Eldest child already walks 10 minutes to meet us. Otherwise I would have to get the children out three times. We are at three schools because we moved here recently and they are the only places available. I'm not so worried about me but getting a 3 year old out when he's just fallen asleep just to walk a few minutes into yet another school is so hard. I was on a busy road tonight with him having a massive tantrum and trying to get the baby in a sling. And then I am still 20 minutes late collecting her. And yesterday with all the toing and froing one of them threw up everywhere. I think I'll go back to home educating her. She's loving the school though. But it's not fair on them. And I can't assimilate collecting my own children without offering to car pool. I would let everyone down.
Hellokittykat I thought you had hit a brainwave about eldest going in to get her. But he comes out 20 minutes later and by the time I've got him and driven to third school I would be 45 minutes late.
Can't you go to an appeal, and ask for them to be all in the same school using the reasons you have explained?
OK this I is Probably a rubbish idea has have no idea of the geography of your school run but is a bike with a trailer a possibility and scooters/bikes for the school aged ones? Some of the trailer design let you unclip so no need to wake up sleeping babies/ toddlers ...
Which ages are they all and what time does each one come out? Sure we can figure out something between us!!
It is true that lots of people have babies and toddlers, and do more than one pick-up, but if you're really thinking about homeschooling as an alternative now that you've experienced the reality, have another go at talking to the schools. When the alternative is deregistering, they might be willing to make an exception.
Sorry you are having a hard time, but what did you think was going to happen when you have five children?
Sometimes when my youngest has fallen asleep by the time we get to the car park for pick-up, a neighbour with a child from ds1's class will collect him from the classroom and bring him to me in the car park - doesn't create any extra work for her at all, so I don't feel bad about not exactly reciprocating (she only has one child). Might that be a possibility?
CarolineKnappShappey that was harsh.
I don't think the OP planned to have 3 of her school age children at 3 different schools.
which is the whole point of the thread
I know, I know. I knew it would be impossible. That's why I kept the third one home. But now that the nicer weather is here she is desperate to be at school. So I wanted to try and work it out for her. But I've let her down. Kids are 4 weeks, 2, 4, 7, 8. First school kicks out at 3.05. Takes 25 mins to get to second school which ends at 3.15. Always late. Have to pick up son at 3.50. Takes me 25 minutes to get to him. He comes out at 3.30 but walks slowly. Thanks for being kind. I don't expect them to give me preferential treatment. Why should they? But I can't keep this up. I'm exhausted. We did appeal but failed.
What a ridiculous and unhelpful post! Moving to a new area and getting kids into schools is difficult. Op has mentioned a failed appeal so this situation is clearly not by design.
Always surprises me that someone goes to the trouble to post but writes something completely unsympathetic and rude - why bother?
How about wheels that clip onto the car seat so you don't need to wake the baby each time?
What after school clubs does each school do?
Can you find a CM(s) to drop at least one child off or wait outside until you get there?
Are there any before / after school clubs you could use? Might make logistics even harder I guess but might buy you some time for pick ups 2 and 3?
Are there any neighbours / can you pay someone who would watch the baby and toddler at home whilst you do the school run? I am assuming that this will only be for this term as all the children will hopefully all be at the same school from september?
Just wanted to say poor you doing all this with a 4 week old.
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