3 Things I Hate About Preschool Pickup

I love my 6-year-old's elementary school. The teachers are great, the parents are friendly, the parking is plentiful, and I almost always enjoy going there.

My 4-year-old's preschool, on the other hand? Well, the teachers are great, but the rest of it ... not so much. As much as I look forward to the brief kid-free breaks I get on preschool mornings, I've come to dread the dropoffs and pickups. Boy, especially the pickups.

Let me share my list of top preschool pickup pet peeves, and you can tell me—is it just me?

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The insanely, ridiculously, brain-meltingly terrible parking. Okay, so our preschool has a specific area along a curb for pickups and dropoffs, and in the morning things usually go fairly smoothly. By pickup time, though, parents arrive at various times and wait for school to let out. You'd think the parking would be pretty straightforward, right? One car parks in the very front, the next car parks behind them, and so on and so forth with even spacing so there's room for everyone, right?

WRONG. THIS NEVER HAPPENS. Every time, someone drives up and just ... RANDOMLY STOPS. With a BUNCH OF SPACE between them and the next car, but not QUITE enough space for someone else to parallel park there.

Here, I've created an extremely detailed technical illustration of this phenomenon:

Then someone else does the same thing and pretty soon there's no parking left, all because PEOPLE SUCK AT TETRIS.

The Mom Cliques. Admittedly I am shy and not exactly the most outgoing person on earth, but my kid's preschool has a clique that's sealed up tighter than Fort Knox. I don't know how these moms know each other, but as soon as they see each other, they form an impenetrable group in order to chatter excitedly amongst themselves while the rest of us stand around whistling awkwardly. They never talk to the dads, they never seem to accept new members, and their presence reminds me of my least favorite middle school memories and CLEARLY THEY DON'T KNOW HOW TO PARK.

The sign-in sheet. Here's how a sign-in sheet should work: the adult signs it, in an expeditious manner, being cognizant of all the other parents who are waiting to sign it. Here's how it actually works: a mom encourages her 4-year-old to sign his very own name because he's such a big boy now, while simultaneously carrying on a leisurely conversation with another Mom Cliquer. "Wow, yes, you're doing so good Billy, oh and anyway Carol so I was saying about the birthday party, it's going to be gluten free ..." MEANWHILE I AM STANDING IN THE POURING RAIN AND ALSO I PARKED IN GUAM.

So what do you think? Are those reasons enough to legitimately dislike a preschool, or should I get the hell over myself already?


Image via Flickr/US Embassy

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