Monday, March 06, 2006

The Essay

Many of us who applied to college remember with little fondness the dreaded application essay. How do you condense your lack luster high school years into 200 words of stupendous achievements? How do you make your "leadership skills" sound extraordinary? Well some parents are still sweating the essay. No, not for themselves. Not even for their teens. It's for their toddlers. Yep, to get into the coveted elite preschools the parent must tell the world why their toddler is heads and diapers above the rest. Here's what one father in New York wrote about his top notch 18 month old twins,

"He knows that birds like to sit on rooftops when they are not on the ground, that cats and dogs like to be petted, and that the blue racquetballs in the can belong in the racquetball court upstairs."

About Humza's twin, Raza, he wrote, "He is happy to point out all his body parts when asked."

Gee, I'm impressed. Aren't you? It's amazing what otherwise intelligent people are reduced to. The parents increase their options of getting into the best schools if they separate their children into different schools. How sad. If you break up the family you have a better chance of getting in. Who cares that the child's most important relationships are destroyed. They got in!

The preschool admission process is actually becoming a lucrative business. Seminars are being taught on how to write a better essay to get little junior accepted. They encourage creativity in the describing the little dears. Mr. Humza described his son as a "soft hearted jock". That probably means he likes to throw things and cries when told no. He described his other child as a "thinker and a mischievous lover." I'm not even going to try figuring out what that means. You know if the blogging boom turns to a bust. I may just try my hand at ghost writing essays for stressed out moms and dads. I'm mean how hard can it be? I'll bet you could get good money writing a decent, original essay.

This is all just plain silly. They are just children. Can't we just let them be that for a little while longer before this nonsense takes over their lives?

And by the way, I am happy to report that my toddler (pictured above) has been accepted at the very prestigious Spunky Homeschool - no essay required.

Update 3/7: Not if but when? CJ somewhat sarcastically commented, "Anyone want to put bets on how long it will be before preschool is made mandatory across the U.S.? " According to one expert we won't have to wait very long.
Dick Clifford, an early education expert at the University of North Carolina, sees pervasive pre-kindergarten as inevitable state by state, nationwide. It's not a matter of if, he says, but when.
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