I know this because our school system’s text-caster has told me so, just like it alerted me to their arrival yesterday in Washington DC, their trip to dinner and their return to the hotel last night.
Please make it stop.
I do not want to know what my eighth grader is doing on his class trip. I am sure that if there is an emergency involving my child, someone will contact me — perhaps by text-caster — and that I will deal with it accordingly.
Otherwise, I really don’t care. Whatever he’s doing, he’ll tell me about when he gets home. Or at least, I’ll get the gist of it, and that’s good enough.
But someone at school has decided that the parents need a real time, play-by-play of the eighth grade class trip to DC. I imagine that’s because a few parents have demanded as such in prior years, and the text-casted announcements prevent these helicopter parents from contacting the teacher-chaperones every hour.
One text a few times a day allows the chaperones to concentrate on the thankless job of herding a few hundred 14-year-olds through the sites of our nation’s capitol in 90-degree weather without parental interruption. That they even feel they have to do so is a sign of the nervous nature of not a few of today’s parents.
And my ninth grader and I are amused by the whole thing.
“Nick! Oh my God!” I yelled up the stairs last night. “The eighth graders have finished their tours for the day and are on their way to dinner!”
“I hope they’ll be okay!” he shouted, running out of his room. “I’m so worried!”
“Nick!” I shouted later in the evening. “They’re going back to the hotel!”
“I hope they tell us when they brush their teeth!” he retorted, and we snickered like people who aren’t trying to get a few hundred eighth graders to settle down and go to their hotel rooms.
We were a tad smug, sure, but with good reason. In truth, we need to know just three things about the eighth grade trip to Washington, DC:
- What time our eighth grader needs to be at the bus.
- What time we need to pick him up at the bus when it returns.
- Does our eighth grader require medical attention any time between the bus drop-off and the bus pick-up?
I suspect we will hear about their afternoon activities shortly, as well as their trip home. When my eighth grader tells me about his trip, I’ll pretend not to know already. Then I’ll text Nick to tell him he doesn’t have to worry anymore.