To want to march up to school and shout a lot.

(28 Posts)
plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 14:36:41

I know I'm being unreasonable but I'm bloody annoyed.

Background:
DD is 15, she has problems with the nerves in her arm which leave her with a complete paralysis in her left arm. She had the problem a few years ago and thanks to physio etc it slowly recovered. Unfortunately it relapsed last year and now the Dr's think it may be neurological and she's undergoing lots of tests. Thanks to her school being worse than useless with her needs she has been attending part time for some time now. She's quite socially anxious anyway so having time off really worries her more than a normal kid.

Sunday she had a diarrhoea bug, 24 hour thing, nothing unusual but bad enough that I kept her at home yesterday. Dropped her in school earlier and got a text from her within ten minutes. One of her teachers has had a moan at DD for yesterday and told her that the absence is unauthorised now because she can't provide a Dr's note. I said I'd provide a note but no, apparently thats not good enough and she needs a GP's note.
1. If I'd called the GP I couldn't have gotten an appointment for this 24 hour bug until at least Friday.
2. Who the hell takes a 15 year old to a GP for 24 hour sickness and diarrhoea anyway?!

So now I have a fretting teenager again who will worry over this trivial little thing until I can get it sorted. I'm bloody fuming.

It's the next instalment in a long line of shit from this school and frankly I really am ready to explode.

PlentyOfFreeTime Tue 18-Jun-13 21:22:00

It sounds complicated Janey

I have a DS with SN (adult now). Your DD should be able to get additional support at her future FE College from the college's learning support team (my DS did and it helped him enormously)

plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 20:01:31

Plenty, its complicated. Her injury was caused initially by her over stretching doing something a teacher had asked her to do. It recovered over 12 months. At the time we were told that although the stretching had caused the initial problem they didn't know why it happened or if it could happen again but as she had recovered the Specialists decided against more investigation.

We didn't follow up at that point because we just didn't know how or if this would affect her in the longrun. Now its back again and they are trying to find out why it happens, though its most likely to be a neurological problem.

If this was going to happen anyway then it seems unfair to penalise the school for the coincidental trigger IYSWIM.
We simply don't know enough about the injury at this point to make any judgement.

PlentyOfFreeTime Tue 18-Jun-13 19:25:11

If it was an incident while at school that caused your DD's arm injury why are you not suing the school?

She deserves to be compensated for her loss of function in her arm.

Turniptwirl Tue 18-Jun-13 19:19:13

Old to the docs with 24 hour D&V unless they have a medical condition which is complicated by this

Turniptwirl Tue 18-Jun-13 19:18:38

There's a difference between someone who takes a week off for every sniffle (docs note required for all absenses semi-reasonable) and someone with a documented ongoing medical condition which has caused them to have a lot of time off (docs note for a day off with a bug is ridiculous!)

No one takes a 15 year

RiotsNotDiets Tue 18-Jun-13 19:13:08

Oh sorry, I only read the first few messages blush

RiotsNotDiets Tue 18-Jun-13 19:12:02

If you ring your GP and explain the situation, they'd probably write you a note.

Mine would anyway

McNewPants2013 Tue 18-Jun-13 18:54:50

Just to be sarcastic I would get a self certification form and send that in.

Your dd school don't sound very supportive.

plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 18:48:41

Thanks Sarah, I do feel she's been let down. Its only in this last few months that things have started to improve a little for her. Initially the solution to being hit was to not leave her unsupervised in class and to have her leaving lessons 5 minutes early so she wasn't jostled in the corridor. This worked until the teacher left the room.
She currently works mostly in a separate area of the school away from her friends and usually with kids put into isolation or who have been disruptive. It's not ideal, but I can at least guarantee she's safe.

Originally her medication (Amytryptiline (sp!) ) meant that mornings in school were virtually impossible because she was so hungover and groggy in a morning. She came off those recently and currently manages on painkillers which aren't as effective but do mean she can function a little easier. Now she's off them she's trying to extend her school hours and does take the odd lesson in the main school now. I'm exceptionally proud of her but I do worry about her in that environment.

I'm so sorry you have had the same treatment Sarah, why some kids (and Adults) think its funny I do not know.

SarahAndFuck Tue 18-Jun-13 18:38:58

Plainjaney your poor DD. I don't blame you for wanting to go and shout or her for feeling stressed and upset.

I'm glad the school have apologised. But they sound like they have been letting your daughter down for months now. And if they are distancing themselves from an injury she received at school then that's even worse.

Have they done anything about the children hitting her? I had a similar thing all through school and actually still with some adults now. I'm deaf in one ear and you get the occasional arsehole who thinks it's funny to shout in it to 'prove' that I'm deaf.

Apart from the fact that I can still hear with the other one, I do still feel the vibrations of loud noise in the deaf ear and it hurts. They should at least ensure your daughter is not being hurt on purpose to prove that her arm has been injured.

cory Tue 18-Jun-13 18:28:08

cricketballs Tue 18-Jun-13 16:15:00
"Generally if a student has low attendance then it does get to the point where only a letter signed by a medic will be allowed in order to ensure that an absence is genuine otherwise legal action will be automatic"

How do you manage that when a GP would probably refuse to see somebody with an ordinary stomach bug for fear of passing infection to his other patients? I am sure my GP wouldn't want us down the surgery for this sort of thing. Otoh he would certainly refuse to write a medical letter for a patient he hadn't seen.

Also, if you have a child with a compromised immune system or chronic condition, what do you do when you have run out of money for the £20 surgery fee?

We had very similar problems with dd's junior school; GP, school nurse, paediatrician, school doctor and specialist clinic all wrote to the school to explain that dd's frequent absences were unavoidable and they still kept harassing us. Her secondary school seemed to manage just fine.

plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 16:24:24

cricket, our GP has been brilliant all throughout this. He's written to the school and explained the condition and its ongoing difficulties and he has spoken at length with them about it in the past.

I just want to sail through to the holidays with her now so she can have a break from worrying over it all.

cricketballs Tue 18-Jun-13 16:15:00

Generally if a student has low attendance then it does get to the point where only a letter signed by a medic will be allowed in order to ensure that an absence is genuine otherwise legal action will be automatic

plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 15:49:51

LayMeDown, I've thought of home schooling but she has only got until May before she leaves so decided to tough it out until then. She wants to go to college and will need Art, English and Maths for her chosen path so we are concentrating on those as much as possible and just 'getting her through'

Without going into massive detail we think the schools 'unwillingness' to help perhaps stems from the first time she had this injury which happened within the school. We have often wondered whether they are waiting for us to sue so are distancing themselves from it as much as possible.

I've just had a conversation with the school who have apologised on behalf of the over zealous new young teacher who is shadowing the head of year and doesn't know the policies. Her note of absence is fine and DD is more relaxed.

And on to the next battle.
(and I didn't shout once, thank you for letting me have a moan)

Startail Tue 18-Jun-13 15:48:15

Schools are under massive pressure from Ofsted about attendance.

This is causing them to behave very illogically. Ours has sent out masses of insulting letters about attendance, when they know full well people had Nora Virus and a vile flu bug as all the staff were ill too!

You need a single point of contact at the school and to get this sorted out. Your DD needs to spend maximum time in school, in her own class learn effectively, minimum time in learning resource being forgotten and have a simple system for handling messages/proof when she has to be away.

DeWe Tue 18-Jun-13 15:41:27

plainjaney my dd2 (age 9) was born without a hand. It's actually easier than what you describe, but there is a lady in her charity who had polio as a child and has a non-functioning arm.

The charity is "Reach" and website is www.reach.org.uk . They may be able to offer some support and help for you. Most of the children are missing part of their arms/hands, but non-functioning arms are also covered by the charity.

If you want to pm me, then I can see if she is willing to email you, or if I can help in any other way. Dd2 has got very frustrated at times with other children's reaction. Some of them seem to think if they press her arm in the right way then a hand will magically pop out hmm.

LayMeDown Tue 18-Jun-13 15:33:13

My God, how that poor child is being treated is awful. Can you not take her out all together and home school/ tutor?
I find it hard to believe they can get away with this. Surely there is a discrimination case here. Your DD is having her education seriously impaired by the school refusing to accommadate her disability. If this was a workplace they woule be prosecuted.

BreeWannabe Tue 18-Jun-13 15:06:33

The teacher will be mistaken. A note or phone call from parent saying the child is ill is sufficient; can't imagine why it'd be any different at any other school.

plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 14:58:00

Artex I've cried tears some nights when she's gone to bed with sheer frustration at how she's been treated.
She's been hit, poked and prodded by classmates who don't believe she has no feeling there so has come home bruised and in pain (she does get burning, shooting nerve pains in the arm).
I've had a battle to get any work for her to do at home.
She was promised a Mentor in December who didn't actually appear until May and only then because I wouldn't let it drop.
She's had her lift access removed despite big signs on all staircases telling pupils to 'keep left'. It took 2 days of pointing out with a left arm paralysis how in Gods name was she going to hold the bloody stair rail.
She's now tucked away forgotten in a learning resource center where more often than not she doesn't get any work sent down.

Fortunately I have a good friend who is a science teacher who has helped and DD is a bright child so despite everything she is still on target for her GCSE's next year, but they really have made life bloody miserable for the last few years over this.

Sparklymommy Tue 18-Jun-13 14:52:59

Your poor dd! Tbh, 1 unauthorised absence is not going to ruin her life. The teacher is in the wrong though so definitely fight it for your daughters sanity!

ArtexMonkey Tue 18-Jun-13 14:52:02

At our school the policy is 48 hours off with d&/or v. So she shouldn't really have gone in today even. I don't know wtf they're playing at. Obviously they've got it in their heads that due to her long term medical condition she's some sort of slacker. It's a shame they can't be more supportive, especially if your dd is getting stressed by their attitude.

plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 14:49:44

Have had a dig about and found a policy in the badly laid out website. I telephone the school to inform of absence anyway yesterday, there is no mention of Doctors notes just this:

"Confirm the reason for the student’s absence in writing on the first day on which he/she returns to school."

I think its probably a teacher having a bit of a power trip but could have done without upsetting DD at present.

plainjaney Tue 18-Jun-13 14:45:29

Usually if DD is off I provide a note, if its one of her many appointments they get a physical copy of either the physio appointment card, GP's card or NHS appointment letter.
We've worked adequately like this for the last 18 months, no idea what has suddenly changed to warrant this but its a bit ridiculous.

I'm waiting for Student Services to call me back, the policy isn't online anywhere and I'd like to see a copy of this policy believe me.

AThingInYourLife Tue 18-Jun-13 14:44:26

They are obviously involved in a shared learning scheme whereby adolescent guts educate one another in various pathogens.

Many schools don't have the vision for this and insist pukey pupils are kept at home for 48 hours, thereby depriving classmates of valuable hours with their heads down the toilet.

claraschu Tue 18-Jun-13 14:43:05

That's terrible; what nonsense. No one goes to the doctor for things like this, as it is a waste of the doctor's (and your) time.

I would go talk to the school again, as some teachers seem to think she is skipping school for no reason. Make sure that ALL her teachers know she is having ongoing medical tests.

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