Can I go to school?

Jackson got his ‘school bag’ on again this morning. Everyday, it’s the same question.

“Daddy, can I go to school?

“No, Jackson, it’s not your turn yet. Next year is your turn.”

“Later?” Jackson’s standard reply of faint optimism for everything he hopes is untrue.

“No, not later, honey. Next year.”


“No, next year, darling.” It pains me to say this, considering how meaningless a concept it is for a three-year-old.

“Next year later tomorrow?”


Jackson thinks everything his older sister does is the most remarkable, desirable thing one could ever aspire to. School, swimming class, homework, folding laundry, wearing dresses – it doesn’t matter.

Sometimes, in our haste to transform education and to point out the faults with the system, we forget that there are millions of Jacksons out there who think ‘school’ is the most awesome concept ever invented. Sometimes we forget that, for many, school is the best part of their day.

These days, I find it’s the way and the tone with which my son says the word, “Tomorrow?” that drives much of what I do as an educator, parent, and global citizen.

“Daddy, it’s my turn to do homework.”

“Alright, Jackson, go ahead. Go do some homework.”

“Yay! Homework, homework, homework!”



  1. I absolutely love this post! As a Kindergarten teacher for 8 years and a Grade 1 teacher for 2, I teach tons of students that love coming to school. Many tell me that the weekends and the summer are “sad times” because they can’t go to school: they love it that much! Nothing makes me happier than to have students that feel this way about school and learning. I hope that they always feel this way, and I hope that Jackson does too!


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