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Old 04-01-2019, 01:41 PM
 
117 posts, read 295,414 times
Reputation: 73

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My sonís robotics team wants to compete in a competition next month. I am the only parent on the team who has any concerns, of which I have several.
1. He will miss 3 days of school to attend (this is not a school club)
2 The trip is 10 hours, not including stops for potty, gas, food in a rented van
3. The kids will return from the trip around 1am Sunday night in a van with inexperienced large vehicle drivers
4. Cost 700
5. My son would be staying with families I donít know all that well

I really donít want him to go per the above reasons however people feel Iím being over protective. I could go as well but I donít have a ton of vacation time and would have to get a hotel for 3 nights or fly but then thatís an additional 500 , Iím a single parent so funds are a bit tight. Iím a little surprised all of the other parents have been 100% onboard. Am I being too protective and unreasonable? My son is going to be pretty upset if I donít let him go.
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Old 04-01-2019, 02:05 PM
 
Location: A Yankee in northeast TN
10,046 posts, read 13,921,700 times
Reputation: 21772
For me, reasons 1 and 2 would not be a concern, the cost would be a minor concern, either I can afford it or I can't.

Inexperienced drivers would be a concern, but are we talking about parents who have long experience and are comfortable driving pickup trucks or other larger vehicles? Personal vehicles or rentals, what kind of insurance, back up plans for breakdowns, etc.? How many kids per chaperone, how many occupants per vehicle?

Families you don't know well are trickier. If your son is going to be part of a group that competes you should get used to the idea that you won't always be able to be with him on competitions.
My son did competitions that took him all over the country and sometimes we weren't able to go along. We didn't know all the families that participated very well, but we knew the 'group', if that makes sense. I spent plenty of time around them at local competitions to feel that most of them were responsible, caring adults, just like me. There were only one or two parents that I felt uncomfortable about and wouldn't let my son travel with.
If you feel like you don't know the other parents well enough yet perhaps it would be worthwhile to join this trip. If you can't go on this trip will there be others in the near future that your son can attend?
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Old 04-01-2019, 02:53 PM
 
33,870 posts, read 40,584,742 times
Reputation: 29281
Quote:
Originally Posted by cddweller View Post
Am I being too protective and unreasonable? .
Yes
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Old 04-02-2019, 06:22 AM
 
3,329 posts, read 3,102,363 times
Reputation: 3777
My mom sent me to Europe in the early 90's when I was 16 with 54 other kids and about 10 college coaches we had never met. She put me on a plane to Copenhagen, Denmark at Chicago O'hare and never looked back. I was there for 10 days.

Yes, you're being over protective.

Last edited by Riley09swb; 04-02-2019 at 07:33 AM..
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Old 04-02-2019, 06:42 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,057 posts, read 60,576,092 times
Reputation: 31303
Quote:
Originally Posted by cddweller View Post
4 day trip too long and far for 6th grader?
Nope. But I bet after 4 days the teachers and chaperones will think so.

Quote:
Am I being too protective and unreasonable?
Yes.
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Old 04-02-2019, 07:23 AM
 
3,441 posts, read 3,031,298 times
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Was this not mentioned as a possibility when he joined the team at the beginning of the year? Some teams/clubs require travel and they can be pricey at times.

As a parent, if you have concerns,you should probably show up at a few meetings and meet the the other parents to get a feel for the group. It's hard, but this is an age when you start letting go and let your kids do more without you. IMO, some groups like Robotics overall tend to attract good kids with parents who care.

My oldest was on a team in 5th grade. He flew with two teachers and six classmates to Washington DC and stayed with them for 3 or 4 days. We decided to join them,but didn't show up until the next day and we didn't get to see him much until he was handed off to us at the end of the trip because we decided to stay longer and explore. This was just the beginning for him. He traveled quite a bit with school after that. My youngest just got back from a trip. I could have gone, but chose not to. I had pictures because the other parents were posting them for me.

As far as costs go, some of the clubs and organizations can get rather pricey especially if the kids do well and have to travel for the big competitions. We've been in a couple of groups that do a lot of fundraising. With some groups you are on your own. You may not know the specific costs in advance, but you know they will becoming. It may be a good time to have your son take on some responsibilities and start figuring out ways to make some money for extracurricular activities.
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Old 04-02-2019, 07:26 AM
 
9,034 posts, read 3,528,141 times
Reputation: 22818
How much does your son want to go?

If he really, really wants to, I'd let him. Is he on a FIRST team? Or something similar?

I'd have LOVED to have my kids involved in that kind of brainy, positive, cooperative energy!
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Old 04-02-2019, 07:34 AM
 
Location: The end of the world
505 posts, read 186,146 times
Reputation: 372
Quote:
Originally Posted by cddweller View Post
My sonís robotics team wants to compete in a competition next month. I am the only parent on the team who has any concerns, of which I have several.
1. He will miss 3 days of school to attend (this is not a school club)
2 The trip is 10 hours, not including stops for potty, gas, food in a rented van
3. The kids will return from the trip around 1am Sunday night in a van with inexperienced large vehicle drivers
4. Cost 700
5. My son would be staying with families I donít know all that well

I really donít want him to go per the above reasons however people feel Iím being over protective. I could go as well but I donít have a ton of vacation time and would have to get a hotel for 3 nights or fly but then thatís an additional 500 , Iím a single parent so funds are a bit tight. Iím a little surprised all of the other parents have been 100% onboard. Am I being too protective and unreasonable? My son is going to be pretty upset if I donít let him go.

Life is about taking chances. My sister went on her Highschool trip to Europe. We was all afraid. The biggest threat was one of the classmates was so "Dumb" she would
A. Never or forget to flush the toilet
B. Brought a big can lysol spray.
C. When returning home the airport security would not allow her to bring the can of lysol from the plane.

Asides for that there was one French tour guide who would always say "I will killllll youuu!!!" when anybody would stare at him too long, or in random phrases of his sentences. Asides referencing them as "Vampires". Basically the hotel had a tour presence.



The bottom line is that she returned home even happier then she was to leave. Same with college. Let your son enjoy his freedoms. He is young and it is a big world out there.
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Old 04-02-2019, 07:47 AM
 
3,919 posts, read 3,595,961 times
Reputation: 10491
This is a wonderful opportunity for your son. You should let him go. It's fantastic that he's involved in something educational, useful, with other good kids. Think of the alternative - addicted to video games?
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Old 04-02-2019, 08:34 AM
 
646 posts, read 437,919 times
Reputation: 1531
Yes you are being way over protective. Let the kid go. My kids loved those experiences and those memories last a life time. He should be doing something to earn some $$$ though. ...even if it's just his spending money for the trip.
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