Forgotten Lunch: St. Brendan Superheroes To The Rescue!
What do I love about St. Brendan School near Hancock Park? It’s a small, Catholic school in the middle of a city of 7 million people. There’s no losing your kid among the six different kindergarten classes. Every teacher knows just about every kid there, and every kid knows just about every kid there, K-8! Almost every parent has an eye on every student. I actually have a story that exemplifies the wonderful, community-minded nature of the school.
My son (he was 6 and in first grade at the time) was without a lunch one day, due to my mixing up the hot lunch days. When he realized he had no lunch, his teacher offered to call me on her cell phone. She called and left a message. But, I didn’t get the message until that NIGHT. When I listened to the message, I realized the teacher had not hung up the phone and it was recording her call with my son.
On the message, I could hear my son’s voice. I could tell he was trying to speak without crying, but then the flood gates opened when he said, “I don’t know what to do.” Yes, my heart broke, but then I could hear the first grade aide asking him what was wrong, and him crying about not having lunch. Then a friend and fourth grade teacher approached him and said “We’ll find you a lunch.” Next, I heard another friend and parent, who was volunteering that day, say “We have a lunch for you. ” It’s waiting for you out here.” The voices faded way as the phone was handed to someone, unbeknownst to them that it was still recording. There were murmurs of “poor little guy,” “he’s so sweet…” yadayada. Then, the phone went off.
Some people say, “I can’t believe the school didn’t call you or tell you,” etc…but I’m not really that type parent anyway. I figure, if they handled it, they handled it and I would hear from my kid if he/she didn’t think it was fair. And in reality it was handled. They didn’t know I was listening and I heard exactly how it went down. I hung up my phone and immediately emailed all parties involved thanking them for being there for my kid. I really felt at that moment, that my kids were in the right place (I have two at St. Brendan). They are well-looked after. They are not forgotten amidst the other 34 kids in their class.
When I was looking at schools, I don’t think I really knew what I was looking for. Finding the right academic fit for a 5-year old seemed vague and intangible at the time. What I wanted was a place that would keep my treasures safe and protected until I picked them up at school. When I heard my son’s message I realized I made the right choice. I saved it for months, and every now and then I’d listen to his distressed little voice, and to the heroes that rescued him when I couldn’t.
Wendy B. is the mom of a 2nd and 3rd grader at St. Brendan School