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To think that 3 teachers shouldn't have done this to my son?

(224 Posts)
Marn1e Wed 29-Jan-14 20:28:53

My DS is 7 and in year 2. He's been swimming with the school every week for the past two terms and enjoys it a lot.

Last week he had a flare up of his eczema. For background, he's suffered since he was 3 months old and has been involved in clinical trials/ all sorts of treatments etc. I now generally just keep him moisturised etc and only use his 10% steroid cream when need be. Last week he was covered so I immediately used his cream and gave him anti histamine etc.

It coincided with swimming so I popped into the office on the relevant morning and told them he'd had a flare up of eczema and I was going to keep him off swimming for two weeks ( necessary because the steroid immediately gets to work but further applications are needed even when the patches are gone to continue "dampening' it all down.

Today was the second week so I didn't send him in with his kit. He's still covered but on the mend so he will be back to it next week.

He came out of school today and told me that a teaching assistant had approached him and asked him why he wasn't swimming. He told her he had eczema. She then called over another teacher and a helper and between them they asked him to pull up his trousers so they could see his legs and then asked him to pull up his tops so they could look at his chest, tummy and back. He did this but was obviously a bit bothered as it was the first thing he said to me when he came out of school.

I called the school and the relevant teachers had gone home, although the teacher I spoke to said there would have been a very good reason why they did this and he " probably said his skin was hurting so they had a look".

He didn't say this. He has never once complained about it and he's never had time off school for it. Besides, he told me he was approached by a TA who specifically asked to look at it.

I've asked the school to come back to me with an explanation. They obviously don't believe me ( err not sure why?!?! ) but instead of calling me they chose for three of them to get him to pull up his clothes.

So is this a big deal? Wwyd?

Marn1e Wed 29-Jan-14 20:30:40

Incidentally I'm not accusing them of anything improper! I just don't like the fact they made a 7 year old boy feel uncomfortable and embarrassed

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 29-Jan-14 20:33:44

I've known teachers do this if they don't believe the parent/child or are looking for injuries.

You actions very much depend on how he feels about what happened.

phoolani Wed 29-Jan-14 20:33:47

I wouldn't feel at all comfortable if this happened to my dc. Doesn't strike me as appropriate at all. And it sounds as if they were basically calling him a liar..

ssd Wed 29-Jan-14 20:33:57

they shouldnt have done this, I'd take it further

StrawberryMojito Wed 29-Jan-14 20:34:28

It is a big deal and I wouldn't be happy with it. I imagine she asked for the other 2 to be present to avoid any allegations of sus behaviour. However, she shouldn't have done it in the first place. If they had a query they should have raised it with you.

softlysoftly Wed 29-Jan-14 20:34:36

YANBU! That kind of checking should have gone out around about the same time as pe teachers checking sanitary use to get out of showering.

dazzledbythesky Wed 29-Jan-14 20:34:39

Definitely not on.

It would have annoyed me because presumably they were checking he wasn't lying. They are not doctors so if it had looked ok to them what would they have done? forced him to swim?

It also means your instructions were not considered important enough to pass on.

Mamafratelli Wed 29-Jan-14 20:37:34

They may have been checking for bruises clutching at straws

dazzledbythesky Wed 29-Jan-14 20:38:19

We're not allowed to remove a child's clothing to look for bruises, ever.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 29-Jan-14 20:39:21

Was this done in public at the swimming baths?

MothratheMighty Wed 29-Jan-14 20:39:29

They handled it badly, but 'You popped in and had a word' might not have been enough. Are the school and all staff aware of the severity, and what they should do if it flares up at school? If they were, then no one should have been asking him to 'prove' it. That was wrong.
Email and change their response.
Some parents only tolerate being phoned if it's an emergency.
I taught a child with severe eczema, and it was standard that he always sat on a chair, because carpets irritated it.

Marn1e Wed 29-Jan-14 20:39:46

Ah it's me they're probably accusing of lying. He's only little and obviously if he's without his swimming kit then it's my responsibility iyswim.

I felt the rage earlier when he told me. No, he's not scarred for life and he was fine really. But he said he "felt funny" and thought it was something he should tell me about.

I don't want three teachers getting him to pull up his jumper so they can examine his chest and tummy! And yes, they'll have seen for themselves he is having a flare up

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 29-Jan-14 20:39:58

Quite right dazzled but we all know it happens

steff13 Wed 29-Jan-14 20:40:48

I don't think they should have done that, if it made him feel uncomfortable. If you want him to be out of the pool, then you wanted him to be out of the pool. I would think it's ultimately your decision. It almost seems as though they wanted to verify his skin was bad, and I don't really think that's their place.

On a semi-unrelated note, two of my kids suffer from severe eczema, and studies have shown that being in the pool or taking "bleach baths," actually helps eczema. I've tried it with both my kids, and they have had improvement, even when steroid creams didn't really help.

Marn1e Wed 29-Jan-14 20:42:03

They're aware he has eczema but only through the form I completed when he joined reception. He does not have any issues at school with it. I treat him when need be and it's usually kept in check. Just so happened last week it wasn't good. Hence why I told the school office he wouldn't be swimming for two lessons. Didn't realise I needed to put it in writing? Maybe I should have?

They won't be checking for bruises. They're checking to see if it's true

Marn1e Wed 29-Jan-14 20:43:16

And no, not by the pool side. At school. He didn't go to the swimming pool.

They didn't touch his clothes . They asked him to pull them up.

MothratheMighty Wed 29-Jan-14 20:47:18

I'd make sure that they know, in class children with eczema can be fidgety, unfocused. in pain and grumpy. I'd make sure that the school were doing all they could to support you both.

Marn1e Wed 29-Jan-14 20:51:38

Oh he's fine usually and it's well managed on the whole. But yes, I'll be putting something in writing so that they're fully aware of why I kept him off for two lessons.

I know it's an important part of the curriculum and I had a valid reason. They're not believing me it would seem.

I'm curious as to what they'll come back to me with tomorrow. What the explanation could be. I feel they should have called me as opposed to examining him

whitepuddingsupper Wed 29-Jan-14 20:55:30

I agree with what steff said about swimming possibly helping with his flare up, I have eczema too and went through a stage last year when it was constantly sore and weeping, it took antibiotics more than once to sort it out but since I've started swimming regularly again it hasn't been anywhere near as bad.

Marn1e Wed 29-Jan-14 20:58:02

I'm not convinced re the swimming but yeah, maybe I'll let him swim through a flare up next time and see if it makes a difference?

The crucial point though is that I, as his parent, made a decision based on something valid and three teaching staff had my son pulling up his clothes to "prove if"

girliefriend Wed 29-Jan-14 20:59:48

My dd has had long running issues with ear infections directly linked to swimming, after a lot of heart ache I decided to pull her out of school swimming lessons for a month to allow her ears to properly recover.

The school were not happy and I had to get a letter signed from her Dr. I also felt they were calling me a liar, even though they had seen how many ear drops, antibiotics etc she had been on.

My point being that maybe another time, get his Dr to sign a letter. I wouldn't be happy in your position either, they shouldn't be getting your son to show them his skin hmm

LineRunner Wed 29-Jan-14 21:03:40

God that's awful.

Awful for you and awful for him.

The school should have checked with you, by phone or letter.

Beggers belief, really.

mistermakersgloopyglue Wed 29-Jan-14 21:06:13

Did the message get back to the teachers that your ds wouldn't be going swimming for 2 weeks? It sounds a bit like bad communication to me, so it would probably have been worth a note directly to the teacher. But really I don't think yabu.

However teachers will always ensure that there is more that one adult there when looking at anything more intimate than a knee/arm/head.

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