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Why Not PCA (Private School)?

Since I never completed my post on how and why we chose public school, and since I DID write a post about our parent interview for private Christian school, many of you have asked, "What happened with PCA? Did she not get in? Was it too much money? Why didn't you choose it?"

We loved every experience we had with PCA.
The teachers, students, administrators--wow, they are the BEST--so respectful, enthusiastic and kind. PCA is like the fun of Disney World wrapped in the Holy Spirit. They integrate family and faith into their schooling and produce a truly stellar education.

It was heart-renching to turn down their VERY GENEROUS financial assistance offer. But on the whole, we felt like it was not right for this time. Karl and I value "room for margin." We don't pack out our schedule, finances, or any aspect of life to the max because when we've done this in the past, it leads to more stress and less flexibility. If there's no room for margin in our schedule, then we can't at the spur of the moment help out a neighbor or friend in need. If there's no room for margin in our finances, we can't offer to invite someone over for dinner or change the menu at the last minute because the day didn't go as planned. We value all of these things.

Choosing PCA would've left no room for margin for us this year. Even though their financial offer was so generous, and even though they figure the assistance based on salary, it would have taken us to our max in every budget category, and we still would have needed to ask grandparents for a little help and/or we would've had to stop giving to missionaries (the latter of which we are not willing to do). The grandparents are generous, and if we had even mentioned the need, no doubt, they would have jumped in to help (as I assume they are reading this right now and thinking, "Yes! We didn't know!"), but it wasn't just finances. If it had been just one area of crowded margin, we could've made sacrifices to make it work.
But the travel to PCA was also too much. We drive there for church and for my Wed. mom's Bible study; at those times of day, it's not a bad commute. But during school-traffic time, and because of the new construction in our town and neighboring towns, it takes 50 minutes one way (we didn't know this until we started the application process and took her to and from during school-traffic times for Opportunity Day and such). And that is not allowing any time for possible delays or walking in the building. We just couldn't spend that much time in the car everyday for Kindergarten, esp. with my 2 littlest ones in tow. Carpool is out of the question, because our vehicle only seats my 3 kids. (And we haven't even mentioned the cost of gas for 3-4 hours of driving).

So with a heavy heart, we said, "No thank you. Maybe in the future." Those roads will be fast and flowing someday. Who knows if we'll be living in this house by then. Only God knows what the future holds. :)

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