I was excited to be asked to write the following guest blog piece for Aristotle Circle, a website and educational resource. Aristotle Circle was founded by Suzanne Rheault, a Wall Street veteran and mother of two who was frustrated by both the process and lack of resources when applying to Manhattan private schools for her children. Aristotle Circle matches parents and students with experts in New York, Los Angeles and other cities to help give families a clear path through school admissions. Aristotle Circle also donates up to 10% of its profits to provide expert services for low income students through the “I Have A Dream Foundation”
Musings Of A Private Elementary School Mom In Los Angeles (And Her Husband) By Christina Simon
Shortly after we enrolled our daughter in a private elementary school in Los Angeles, my husband, Barry, told me he thought he was a scarce commodity at the school: a dad who worked at a “real job”. Terms like “hand me down money” and “born on third base, but thought they hit a triple”, have been tossed about in our conversations. You get the picture. At the time, Barry was CEO of a company with thirty locations around the globe. He wasn’t exactly working 9-5. It was more like 24/7.
Barry thinks that parents who don’t have to work at “real jobs”, and instead create “vanity projects” appear to dominate LA private elementary schools. Wineries, artistic endeavors, clothing stores that are shuttered quickly and oversized, money-losing, signature projects are rampant.
I remind him that a lot of families work hard to pay school tuition. He thinks it’s a small percentage of the families, unless you include the grandparents who pay tuition for their grandchildren. Who really knows? But, it can make for some hilarious social situations when we find ourselves nodding supportively as a parent talks about their “business” or a “huge deal” they are working on. We feign interest, knowing it’s not making or breaking the family finances.
Now that we have kids, my family recently visited NYC for a pre-reception to celebrate Barry’s 25th Harvard College Reunion next year. Barry has suddenly decided, along with his college friends (who also have kids) that Harvard is a really good cause to give money to.
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