Friday, September 17, 2010

The Hated Preschool Hunt

We've decided to take the plunge and join the world of preschool. Beyond the social and motor skills E will be learning, the truth is it will give mommy a chance to grocery shop without getting home and finding someone has added Muselix to my shopping cart without my knowledge or the screaming chorus from the back seat while running errands of "All done car!!!!!!!!!!" and "I push the cart!!!!"

Through searching, we narrowed down to two schools we wanted to see. We went for the interview and immediately liked one way above the other. We knew then and there we'd send her to this school. I was ecstatic to start until I called to confirm and said "oh by the way I forgot to ask, do you require vaccinations?".

Now, let me back up for one second. I understand that (yay!) California requires immunizations, but (boo/hiss!) allows people to opt out. I get it, doesn't mean I have to like it. When I asked what their policy was I wanted to hear of course everyone is vaccinated. What I got was oh well of course we require vaccines, but you're able to opt out if you want. Like she was giving me some hidden gem of a secret. I swear in her next breath she was going to explain how I could go about opting out if I wanted to. She'd give me the key to getting out of "poisoning" my child.

This is a huge problem for us. As a couple of parents that believe that people are putting our society in danger by not immunizing their children it was a complete deal breaker. It makes me so sad considering she would be starting there this Tuesday. (Guess it's take out for one more week.) We really liked the school outside of this major faux pas.

She went on to add insult to injury by telling me that they have never had a problem despite the fact that they have children who are not immunized. I had to explain to her that in the interest of my daughter's safety we would not be attending her school. Then she basically told me in a not so nice tone of voice, good luck finding a school that would be different. Let's see where your smug superiority is when you have a whooping cough epidemic, not that I would gloat. Poor kids...

This got me thinking...I'm frustrated with the amount of woo I encounter in my day to day life. Especially as a parent. I cringe every time I hear, of course I vaccinate, but I space them out or our house is completely gluten free. I want a pediatrician that also attended TAM, I want my kid's teacher to be a member of the JREF. Is that too much to ask? Yeah my plumber doesn't really need to be a skeptic, but it'd be nice.

How do I find these people? I can't really add to my list of interview questions for prospective schools/dentists/car mechanics, please tell me what the word woo means to you and do you believe acupuncture is a valid form of medicine?

I'd love if there was a directory out there, a resource guide to local skeptics. A yellow pages for my fellow woo fighters.

I think I need to start working on a survey...

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