I came home Tuesday with a sense of relief. Nothing bad had happened. It’s just that my son Andrew’s CRCTs were over.
For those of you whose kids are not yet in school, the CRCT is the standardized testing students go through every spring, testing which determines whether or not students get to progress to the next grade. We have been working with Andrew for what feels like months now, helping him with CRCT practice quizzes in addition to his regular homework. However, it hasn’t been his only activity. He’s had baseball, which my younger son Christopher also does, and Cub Scouts. Andrew’s also been preparing for First Holy Communion, a Catholic rite of passage whereby someone first receives the Eucharist (those little circular wafers). He’s been working on this last one almost weekly for over two years.
Like a typical family with young children, we have busy nights. Sometimes, I go straight from work to a baseball field to meet my wife and the boys. If we’re lucky, it’s a family night out. My wife and I sit in the stands with one of the boys while the other one plays on the field. I also get to eat, as my wife always brings something for me. Most of the time, though, one of us has to leave and run one of our kids to another event or home to study. With the CRCT ending, it’s one less thing to plan for. Within 10 days, Andrew will finally receive Communion, and he’ll have no more special classes. Within a month, baseball season will be over for both boys. There will be scouting events, but maybe we can rest for a while (at least until fall, when both boys may play baseball again and Christopher may want to join Cub Scouts like his big brother).
Oddly, we could have made it easier on ourselves. As Andrew is a special-needs kid, he has an Individualized Education Profile (IEP). Kids with IEPs don’t have to worry about CRCTs. They take them, but they get moved along, pass or fail. However, it’s important to us that Andrew still prepare for these test like the other kids. It also helps us to know how he’s really doing.
Last year, Andrew passed two out of five.
This year, we’re hopeful for more.