Yup, Melur starts school this year since she turns 5 at the end of August. In Canada, kindergarten is compulsory and the local school board runs the kindergarten centers along with regular schools.
Registration day started yesterday, Monday January 8th. To make sure that Melur gets enrolled into the nearest kindergarten, we needed to get her registered as early as possible. Since Melur is not a Canadian citizen, her registration takes place at the Vancouver Schoolboard (VSB) office. The bus trip is 1 hour and 15 minutes each way. Mommy took Melur on the very first day. Unfortunetaly, the registration opportunity is limited to 30 per day only. Mommy and Melur got to the office at 10:30am and the serving numbers were all gone. We had to come again the following day...:(
Today, we woke up at 6am and left the house as early as 7:15am. We took the bus number 41 from UBC campus loop, and got to VSB at 8:35am. Our serving number was 11 (amazing considering that the office opens at 8:30am!). It seems that some parents arrived as early as 8am and waited outside the door for the VSB office to open. Mommy was ready with all the forms filled and also the required documents. Mommy also brought crayons and paper for Melur. While all the other parents had to run around and entertain their children, Melur sat quietly drawing and coloring. Mommy spent the time re-checking the forms and reading the newspaper.
The actual registration took only 10 minutes. Melur got the closest school, which is University Hill Elementary. The school is only 10 to 15 minutes away from our house. Yippie! It will be easy for her as well since other kids in the neighborhood mostly attend the same school.
On a side note, Mommy and Daddy are so glad that we spent the last few weeks in Malaysia getting the necessary documents ready. We got certified translation of birth certificates for both Melur and Arman, as well as the immunization records from their pediatrician. Mommy actually saw a parent being turned away since his daughter didn't have a birth certificate (her birth certificate was left in China!). The last few weeks in Malaysia were definitely the busiest. We had so many things to do and so little time. But all the preparations were worthwhile considering that now Melur is able to register into a public kindergarten without much hassle. Looking forward to the same experience with Arman next year.