Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 621

The school tie

Oh lordy, I’ve found out that young Mr McGill definitely does have to wear a school tie to his new junior school in Englandland.

This is going to severely test my parenting skills.

My question is this: can the tie be on elastic? That would save us a billion seconds every morning and for him at PE time. The answer, I found out, is no, it is not allowed to be on elastic. Are they having a laugh? Oh my gawd, my British reserve might pop at this juncture!

Despite this tie issue (yes, I’m sure it will be fine!), and however much I love the ‘dress in whatever you want’ for school (including a self-designed ‘Fart Man’ t-shirt 😉 ), I am a big advocate of school uniforms cos it makes sense, no? I’ve heard many rightful rants from parents, of young ladies especially, who are having problems with the dress code at school here in Howard County.

School uniforms UK style

School uniforms UK style

As I once said to my boss at Bath University Students’ Union when she commented negatively on what I was wearing, I replied: ‘It’s not what I’m wearing, it’s the way I wear it that you don’t like.’

The stress of repatriation

I’m not going to lie, heading back home with endless To Do lists is very stressful. That is why I have booked in some stress-reliving pool-watching time at my friend’s house this afternoon, because I am kind and selfless like that 😉

Anyhoo, from sorting it all out this end, to making sure things are progressing the other end, it can make your British expat head swirl!


Four more days of school

Harry has four days left in his American school. Don’t tell anyone, but I am really, really glad this bit is over. This is the bit of our expat journey that has been the biggest struggle for all of us. No more Common Core Math! Yeehah to that sucker! No more ‘criss cross apple sauce’! I have no idea what they say in England nowadays, but I know it won’t be that! No more recess time! Just playtime (and more of it!).


I’ll be writing a guest post for Expat Child about our US school experiences shortly, so I’ll let it all rip then, folks! (Sure, some of it’s been a joy, but it’s also been very, very different and not always in a easy way!)

Gotta go pack some boxes and wotnot.

Peace out!

This entry was posted in American, British American differences, England, expat, Repatriation and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 621

  1. Candice says:

    How I love “I got the answer by talking in my brain and I agreed…”!!! (Note exclamation points OUTSIDE of quotation marks. 🙂 )

  2. EmmaK says:

    Ha ha to Harry’s math answer although in fairness the Common Core is not a way of teaching or a curriculum. Standards simply say what students should know and be able to do. So each school will have chosen the way they teach these standards and maybe that is what was pissing you off at his school.

  3. iotamanhattan says:

    .Looking forward to that post on schooling. My lowest moment (I think) was when my daughter’s Kindergarten teacher explained her policy, that if a child gave in the daily homework, they would get a piece of candy (because it would be a few minutes after they’d brushed their teeth for the day, obviously). And no-one seemed to think this was odd.

  4. iotamanhattan says:

    Then there was the reading reward scheme, where you got vouchers for Pizza Hut… (apparently that’s been going for decades).

  5. iotamanhattan says:

    Actually, my lowest point was when they were learning history in middle school, and the chapter on WW2 started off with a paragraph which made it sound like Europe had been piddling about but would never have defeated Hitler, and then America stepped in and sorted it all out. There was a sentence about how some people consider that the war started in 1939 (it did!). Intellectually, I know that history differs, according to who writes it, but to see it there in black and white, and to have it taught that way to my child, whacked me in the face emotionally – and I hadn’t anticipated that. Something deep-rooted about needing his history to be my history, I think.

  6. Ray says:

    Poor Harry!

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