When Every Day is “Bring Your Child to Work Day”
by Kathleen McGee
The phrase “home away from home” is often used to describe a vacation destination where you feel as happy, comfortable, and relaxed as you do in your own home. My daughter Kelly and I are blessed to have a home away from home that we visit every weekday. It is Kelly’s school and my place of employment. Our home away from home is Friends School Haverford.
When Kelly and I arrive at FSH we each go in our own direction. Kelly makes her way to Tr. Dee’s 3rd and 4th grade classroom. She is welcomed by the familiar faces of her classmates and the sounds of adolescent chickens as she wonders what adventures await. My first stop is usually middle school advisory where I check in with kids to whom I provide academic support. We talk over homework challenges and sometimes the challenges of the middle school social scene. Over the course of the day Kelly and I may only see each other briefly in the halls or across the playground, but there is peace for both of us in knowing we are part of the same community.
Kelly is taught by women and men of compassion, intelligence, and shared values. These values include educating children about social justice issues, teaching to live with integrity, and exploring the gifts of the natural world. The teachers at Friends School Haverford consistently provide opportunities for first hand discovery that foster Kelly’s love of learning. I know all of this because I have the privilege of being in the classrooms with these teachers too in my role of support coach.
On our way home from school Kelly and I will each share about our day. I may mention a project I helped middle schoolers with that I know she will look forward to, like the recent dissection of a cow eye in science. She may share with me something I remember doing with students last year, like creating a 3D replica of a coal patch. These conversations are an endless source of cherished bonding. On this Bring Your Child to Work Day, as with all days, I will remember how fortunate I am that Kelly and I are able to share Friends School Haverford as our home away from home.