should i have talked to parents before the school?

(33 Posts)
FlemCandango Mon 11-Jul-16 16:47:00

I have already emailed the school so I am really thinking about whether I should have held off or if I should talk to the parents now or at all. Anyway I need to explain.

My dd1 is 10 and in y5 and has been diagnosed as High Functioning ASD. She walks home from school alone but calls me on her mobile (a very cheap one) and talks to me for the duration of the 10 min walk. Before Xmas I was meeting her from school most days which was difficult as I need to meet dd2 at a different school at roughly the same time. This phone call solution has had its problems when her phone was lost or left at him or ran out of charge but we have made it work well on the whole.

Today though I heard a group of girls tease and taunt dd while she was on the phone to me. They accused her of pretending to talk to someone, said they would punch her if she didn't show them the phone and were mocking her frustrated reaction. DD was very clear that she wanted them to leave her alone and they didn't. And I heard it all. I also know the mum's of two of the girls involved quite well and I think they would be horrified at least I hope so.

I have spoken to dd and she is ok, but I am concerned that she already finds the walk home difficult she needs the safety net of being able to talk to me and this is going to add to her feelings of self consciousness and difference. She cant understand why they couldn't just leave her alone, the girls should have respected her requests and they have all known her since they were little. One of them went to dds 5th birthday party angry

I immediately emailed the school and have asked them to speak to the school outlining what I had heard and asking them to speak to the girls as dd is vulnerable and needs support. I have been measured and calm but firm and i am not asking for punishment or anything extreme.

I am wondering what to say to the mothers I know if I should leave it to the school to deal with. I hate difficult conversations but I do think that they would probably want to know. It is hard, dd is my priority and I want to protect her. But I know worse happens it was just awful hearing it all and not being there physically. What should I do?

OurBlanche Mon 11-Jul-16 16:50:08

How well do you know the parents? If well, I wouldn't wait for the school run, I'd pop round and have a chat.

Otherwise, leave it with the school. You'll only get a defensive reaction if you try speaking about it out in public.

I hope the school act quickly...

Snowflakes1122 Mon 11-Jul-16 16:52:02

No-you don't do the right thing. I would have gone through the school too.
Hope your poor dd is ok. Some kids are nasty :-(

Lilly948204 Mon 11-Jul-16 16:52:09

If you know the parents personally I would speak to them as well as the school. Obviously the school can talk to the girls about their behaviour but once your daughter has left the premises it will be difficult for them to ensure the behaviour doesn't occur again.

Speaking to the parents might have a bigger impact.

Snowflakes1122 Mon 11-Jul-16 16:52:45

That's mean to read no-you did the right thing!
Damn iPhone

FlemCandango Mon 11-Jul-16 16:56:11

Quite well but not on a popping round for a cuppa level. More that we are involved in activities together regularly. But the thought of going round is very daunting, but texting I prone to misunderstanding and I don't do pointed vaugebooking. So I should probably call or something. Ugh the thing is I could tell the girls didn't mean it they were teasing I really don't think for a second they were going to hurt dd. But they did not leave her alone and she got increasingly wound up. It was so avoidable!

Middleoftheroad Mon 11-Jul-16 16:56:24

*but I do think that they would probably want to know*

Unfortunately some parents don't want to know and you may not get the reaction you expect. Leave it to school unless these parents are close friends.

OurBlanche Mon 11-Jul-16 17:12:09

In that case I'd leave it unless one of them brings it up at one of those activities... you inly need explain that whilst their DDs were just being silly, not Mean Girls, your DD can't tell the difference...

But you definitely had to contact the school. They are best placed to deal with all on a general as well as specific level.

wizzywig Mon 11-Jul-16 17:15:19

You did the right thing. But i guess as ithers have said, dont expect all the parents to be grateful to you for pointing out that their kids have that side to them. Good on you though. Hope your daughter is ok

MariposaUno Mon 11-Jul-16 17:21:03

It's always best to go through school but I can see how difficult it is not to go to parents.

If you were to then a casual aproach would be fine.
Saying you overheard their dc teasing your dd and that you don't think they realised how upsetting they were being to her.

They might not have meant what they said but words can and do hurt.

TreadSoftlyOnMyDreams Mon 11-Jul-16 17:24:39

Can you arrange to be at the school for the next pick up? Say hi to the girls and say that you heard them talking to DD on her way home? <pointed stare>

FlemCandango Mon 11-Jul-16 17:27:22

I would love to tread!

PinkFluffiUnicorn Mon 11-Jul-16 17:31:01

Oh I like the idea above, try and meet you dd at school and let the girls know you heard them, the school will be able to deal with the incident, if it happens another time then maybe approach the parents.

Havingkittens04 Mon 11-Jul-16 17:31:54

I would so do that TreadSoftly, and thanking them for keeping her company on the walk home while you were on the other end of the line, the entire time, as usual, and listening to everything hmm x

FlemCandango Mon 11-Jul-16 17:36:00

Dr is chilling with horrible histories right now, I am very proud of how she dealt with it all. The school are very supportive generally so it will be dealt with. I am just sorry it happened. Dd might be emotionally immature but she would never tease someone but apparently social sophistication comes with a side order of mean when a group dynamic is added. confusedhmm

FlemCandango Mon 11-Jul-16 17:40:01

I do wonder if emphasizing the fact that she talks to me all the way home will help her or not. I used to get big brother to meet her as he is in the same school. But he is also an aspie and they tend to stress each other out. Which is a shame as a big brother might be what she needs. Hmmm

blankmind Mon 11-Jul-16 17:51:47

I expect they will be mortified when they know you can hear every word and therefore leave her alone.

I hope this doesn't escalate to snatching the phone off her, leaving you both incommunicado. If you can, try and have a backup plan just in case this happens. Big brother out of sight but just 30 seconds behind her maybe, so he can be there soon if there's been an incident?

ElsieMc Mon 11-Jul-16 18:31:35

Don't go to the parents. I have seen this happen at my gs's primary school and it never ends happily. I went to see the parents of three kids who live in the courtyard near me after they pelted my young grandson with rocks (yes, really) and when I asked if their parents were in they said they had left them by themselves. Needless to say, when I called round later I was met with a tirade of abuse from the parents.

The only problem you may have with the school is they may say it was off school premises. Our previous HT used to do this to avoid dealing with anything like this and this attitude was backed by the governors.

Your headteacher needs to deal with this because this is the bullying of a vulnerable girl by two other girls, two onto one. Horrible on every level. How awful for your dd and I hope she is okay.

Good luck with the school.

AlmaMartyr Mon 11-Jul-16 18:37:42

Don't go to the parents, I don't think it works out very well. A lot of people do not want to hear that their children are anything but perfect. Do make sure that the school deal with it, though. Your poor DD sad

FlemCandango Tue 12-Jul-16 10:39:18

Well the school have done their part. The girls have been spoken to and will apologise to dd. We have given dd plenty of praise and reassurance and we will meet her/ walk her to or from school as required. The girls probably feel very embarrassed. I know that this is not the end. DD will be an easy target throughout her school life but she is building resilience every day. I am immensely proud of her today for getting to school with a smile on her face.

MidniteScribbler Tue 12-Jul-16 11:36:08

That's a good result.

Interactions between parents over issues like this rarely go well. Much better to have the school deal with it as much as possible.

claw12 Tue 12-Jul-16 11:41:46

Hope the school talking to the girls also included the consequences of action school would take if it happened again

claw12 Tue 12-Jul-16 11:47:34

www.gov.uk/free-school-transport

Might be worth taking a look at this too

FlemCandango Tue 12-Jul-16 11:59:23

Well I was told they were "reprimanded" so that implies some consequences but I am not sure how things are escalated Claw. I am focused on getting to the end of term then dealing with one aspie kid who loves the hols and one who prefers the timetabled predictability of school and finds holidays hard work. confused

I hope I can find a non aggressive way to broach the subject with the parent I know best at the next social occasion, otherwise it will no doubt hang in the air like a stale fart. If dd is their she will probably talk about it in her matter of fact way, as she is prone to talking about whatever I on her mind with no filters. blushgrin thinking of poor grandads conversation with her when she was doing sex ed at school!

FlemCandango Tue 12-Jul-16 12:04:47

I actually looked into school transport. But we are literally minutes away from her school, she can be met by me when required. High school in 3 yrs which might be a time to use transport, if she is still struggling at times. As I say the phone thing would be fine if it wasn't for other children!

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