October is the cruelest month.

Forget April; October is the month that throws us into a frenzy at the O.K. Chorale. Parent-teachers conferences, NFL football season, appointments, weather, and more, culminating with the ever-overwhelming state testing. This year involves more travel than ever.

Last year I traveled twice for testing. We’re a public charter school, so our students take the required state tests every year. We’re a virtual school, so our students are scattered all over the state. To test, we go to them. We set up test centers in several locations around the state and then we assign our students to the location closest their home. When that’s all scheduled, we schedule our teachers to travel to the test locations.

So that’s the end of the month – testing, which crosses into November, too. Let’s jump back to the top of the October calendar.

Appointments. Two this week, at least one next week. I have a staff meeting Wednesday, too. Why do I do this to myself? No, don’t answer that.

NFL travel: Chuck has to go to Indianapolis to run the station’s satellite truck before, during, and after the Packers play the Colts.

I have parent-teacher conferences for three nights, too. Conferences look different in a Virtual School, but they still mean three additional evenings at school.

But wait, there’s more! While we slice and dice our schedules so that the bunny gets fed and Amigo isn’t on his own for too long, there’s one more game that means travel for Chuck – and while he’s in St. Louis eating fried ravioli and sending satellite transmissions of the Packers, I’ll be heading out to guide a large group of students to fill in the bubbles neatly and thoroughly, erase any changes completely, and make their new marks heavy and dark.

La Petite is stepping in. Amigo will keep her company for a few days while Chuck and I hit the road for our respective job responsibilities. Amigo will feed her bunnies, Sadie and Krumpet, and jam on guitar with La Petite’s significant other, a talented musician.

October is the cruelest month for our schedules. When that’s over, we’ll start preparing for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and birthdays – lots of them. I think I can handle that portion of the calendar year.

I don’t even want to think about March.

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