I stole this picture of the High School girl's swim team from the district website (Ella's somewhere in the back). Now that the swim season is over, I can look back fondly on it as a time when Ella learned the value of exercise, hard work, discipline, team work, failure, friendship etc etc. At the time, however, it was mostly an exercise in me driving her back and forth across town, which wasn't easy given the construction on nearly every east-west throughfare and a couple of the north-south ones.
At one stage I wondered aloud why the parents of the high school team seemed less together on the fundraising/car wash/concession stand/group email front than the middle-school team parents. Ella told me that it was because in high school the expectation is that the girls learn to be more independent. Hmm. I guess we'll see, when the highy-organized parents of last year's 7th graders move up to 9th grade next year.
The independence thing is a work in progress. She catches the city bus, but the frantic running around the house gathering everything up so she can get to bus stop in time is a bit too stressful for either Michael or I to watch. We also had to put a moratorium on her watching Dr Who on her tablet, but mostly thing have gone fairly smoothly. Her first report card arrived yesterday, and if you will pardon the humblebrag, I'm kind of surprised by the weighting of her advanced classes which has resulted in her 101.3 average. I'd never heard of grades over 100 until I started being a teacher. It is so the student rankings reflect that some classes are harder than others, but really, if you're getting a 100 in geometry, it probably is too easy.