my son started year one today and i started work at a different school. last year i was taking him to school and picking him up but this year hes got a childminder doing that. already i feel so out of touch. its hard to get out of him what hes been doing and i feel like ARGH ... i dunno... im not going to have a relationship with his teacher or see whats going on in the classroom etc. how do working mums deal with this ?
I've been doing this for 5 years now - have always worked f/t and not been the person to do drop off and pick-up. Keeping in touch with teachers has never been a problem, the school uses a link book system with which you can send messages to the teachers, these have always been answered. I always, always attend parents' evenings and have found that teachers have been more than willing to make time to meet if there were ever any issues - obviously with some flexibility on my part too, i.e. coming in to work late and then working late to make up the time.
I did have issues with cliquey school-gate mums - basically if you aren't one of the gang, they don't speak to you - but there is also a clique of working mums - we stay in touch via FB, make social arrangements for our children and on those occasions when we do get to the school for school fairs and so on, we tend to find each other. We are a lovely bunch (as I am sure the school gate gang are among themselves) so we all get the support we need.
You'll find a way to make it work - support your DS with his homework, read to/with him, see his teacher when you can. Many schools send home information about the topics that will be covered and how this will be done. The school website is your friend, and so is the school admin team - be nice to them and they will be nice to you.
I worked for son's reception year (it was maternity cover so I have now finished) and this is exactly what I hated about working. They actually offered me a permenant position at the end of the maternity cover but i turned it down because of this (daughter starting reception next week and didn't want the same again).
Is there any chance of any working from home or change in hours so you could at least pick him up and drop him off at least once a week (not sure what your job is as to whether this is remotely plausible). Is this something you could approach your manager about?