to ask school to not let this parent helper work with my DCs? (long, sorry!)(75 Posts)
Back history so I don't drip feed - 2 years ago I was good friends with one of the mums from school (friend A). She introduced me to her friend (friend B) and we socialised a few times together - only coffee after school runs and play times with our younger DCs.
We all shared a mutual hobby and agreed to meet up one evening, no concrete plans were made. One morning friend A asked if I was going to an arranged meeting at friend B's house that evening (to do with the hobby). I hadn't been invited by friend B - I felt a bit hurt that I'd been excluded but genuinely didn't make a big deal of it. Friend A knew how I felt and told Friend B that she'd hurt my feelings.
The reaction from Friend B was extraordinary. She went ballistic - to this day I cannot figure out why. Over the following weeks I was subjected to a torrent of abuse via phonecalls and text messages. Friend A 'sided' with Friend B and stopped talking to me. It turned into playground bully tactics - they would stand near me at the school gate and openly talk about me so I could hear them, I was followed home on a few occasions with taunts and name calling. They did this infront of two other friends, who were amazed at their ridiculousness.
In the end it got so bad that I spoke to the school about what was happening. These women were starting to behave like this infront of my DCs and accused my eldest of bullying (which she wasn't). For a good while I collected my DCs from a different school entrance so we didn't have to face this on a daily basis.
Eventually it fizzled out and they just ignored me (which was a relief!)
Fast forward to now - Friend B is helping at school. Rationally I know she won't do anything to my DCs. but I had to change my phone numbers because of her and had to avoid her every day to stop her abusive, toxic behaviour. I was really intimidated by her and my gut reaction to seeing her writing in my DCs reading record is that I don't want her anywhere near them or having any kind of window into our lives. I have had problems with anxiety in the past and her behaviour brought on panic attacks etc and I can't face feeling like that again. I'm not sure that this feeling is to do with the anxiety, if its because I've been feeling low / anxious since giving birth 3 months ago or because it is actually rational to react like this.
AIBU to ask school to not let this person read with my DCs (they are unsupervised doing so and I am worried about what else she will say while with my DC), or to have any involvement with my DCs education? (I think she may also be starting this term as a TA but not 100% sure).
Please be gentle....
Oh crikey, what a horrible thing for you to go through. I don't think YABU for wanting to keep her away from your dc, but I think it may be borderline U to want the school to go along with it. I think this may be something you have to - albeit reluctantly - swallow.
I'd say something. She sounds unhinged.
YANBU at all. Just tell the school that you don't want her reading with your DCs and tell them why. Also tell them that you expect your concern to be treated as confidential (you don't want her starting on you again). I am stunned adults behave towards each other in this way.
Surely if the school know about her shocking behaviour before, as you said you spoke to them, you would think they would be wary of having her working at the school.
YANBU and I would be concerned about someone who seems to unhinged and with possible anger problems working at the school.
I would ask for a meeting with head teacher and class teacher
Tell them a short, factual account of what has happened
Make sure they understand the effects it has had on you ie panic attacks etc
Tell them what you want them to do
I would ask for teacher/ ta to keep an eye on dc when friend b is in school
I dont really think you can ask that friend b is kept away from dc, but the school should be aware of the situation
ken - I kind of thought I might have to just graciously get on with it (and be the better person as my mum would say!), and step in ASAP if she does anything.
euro - I like your wording Unhinged she certainly is!
I'd definitely speak to the school, they must have some idea about what happened previous due to you having to collect DC's from a different entrance.
svrider that sounds like a good plan.
mega - I thought behaviour like this was limited to 15 year olds
Ellen - I imagine it has all been forgotten about since it happened.
I would ask the school. I don't think it's an unreasonable request, particularly if the school are already aware that there were issues of that nature - it isn't just 'oh I don't like Mrs X' so shouldn't really be seen as opening floodgates or whatever - but I would ask them discreetly, and try to work with them on it rather than just demanding; eg they may not be able to avoid her working with your DC's class but may be able to avoid her hearing your DC read, or avoid her hearing them read without the teacher being in earshot?
As she is volunteering in the class, I don't think it's at all unreasonable for her to be kept away from your DCs, although it would have to be handled discreetly or it could all start up again.
And, unsupervised? Surely not in another room - CRB or no CRB.
I'd have a word with the HT (did they know about the original incidents?)
oops sorry spent too long typing that! lots of xposts
My goodness, you definitely need to talk to the school! Let them know that this woman harassed and intimidated you and ask that she is not ever unsupervised with your children.
Absolutely have a word with school as they are aware of what has happened in the past. Good luck!
Wow what horrible nasty women . In your position I would talk to the school. If this woman has a history of open, public bullying witnessed by other people then there is no way she should be a parent helper. Of course, the school is in the very difficult position of having to deal with her, having already offered her the volunteering position. Perhaps a word to the teacher would be in order, to say that you and this woman have a difficult history and that it would upset your children to have to work with her? I'm sure the teacher will be ok with ensuring they don't go with her.
Thank you all, I'm feeling less like the unhinged one now! Difficult on the little sleep I've had to make a rational response to it all.
Nanny - the classrooms have a big foyer / coatroom type space between them which is where they go to read. There's usually someone floating around, or other children reading, so not entirely unsupervised, but away from the main classes. HT was unaware but the assistant head was a massive support. Maybe I should have a quiet word with her again. Friend B and her equally untrustable friend have a couple of the teachers on their FB so I am wary that this could escalate if I kick up too much fuss.
Yes speak to the Deputy. You're not over reacting at all, I would fell exactly the same as you.
I have heard of a not dissimilar incident and I would ask you to speak to the school. It is not just an issue of your child, but other pupils if what you say about her behaviour (and I do not doubt you) is correct. Her harassment of you is illegal behaviour and she is an inappropriate person to have access to vulnerable children.
I appreciate it is a very sensitive situation for you but I don't think you can accept the situation for your own sake and that of your child.
Oh I'm so sorry. I know how bad anxieties can be and this would have pushed me over the edge. Great advice here! I agree with making an appointment to meet and discuss with the school. I would do the same.
Let us know how it goes
YANBU. Tell the school you wish your children to have no contact with this person because of her irrational and unreasonable behaviour towards you.
ElsieMc part of it stopping was my DH stepping in and he told friend B and her DH that if it didn't stop he would involve the police as it was harassment. We kept all of her texts and a log of the calls just in case.
I wonder who else she's done this to? She was so sly at times it must have been well rehearsed...
MsOnatopp it was awful at the time, but I came out of it stronger and I havent had a panic attack since! If I start feeling wobbly I remind myself how I held it together (particularly infront of DCs) and tell myself over and over that I'm strong, I'm better, I'm ok. Maybe she did me a favour
YANBU. It is no wonder you were amazed / appalled by her reaction. She sounds completely mental.
Frankly I wouldn't want her near anyone's kids, never mind my own. Talk to the school, but be clear about the fact that they MUST NOT tell her that you have reported this, because the last thing you want is a repeat performance.
p.s. do you have all the calls / messages still? if so, i would not hesitate to show those to the school. This psycho should not be working with anyone's kids, let alone yours!
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