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Sexual harrasment? Contact school?(15 Posts)
I have changed my name but do post here from timeto time.
My DD ( not gay) has come home and told me she is being hit on by a lesbian in school. She is upset and doesnt know what to do.
My first reaction was to make a complaint to the school but my DD is afraid it will backlash on her.
This is made more sensitive by the fact the other girl is of an ethnic minority and is new to the school and my DD is afraid to say anything against her.
Has anyone any experience of this?
I don't know and I have no experience so probably should keep my thoughts to myself, but my first thought was to take the story with a pinch of salt. That's one mighty confident teenage lesbian, to be making advances to a straight girl whilst still new to the school. (and two minority groups to boot)
But if you really think it's a problem for your DD, of course you should speak to the school.
Thank you for the input Hoaz and a speedy reply.
I can understand now why my DD does not want me to complain. DD is not a liar and I am confident she is not making it up and that she is quite upset, but if the school take the same view as you, I can see we wont get anywhere and it will make negative waves. Worth thinking about.
I wonder if you can complain along the lines of your daughter being harassed in the non sexual bullying sense rather than the sexual? What happens at DD2's school is that the teachers are asked to keep their eyes and ears open for any interactions involving the kids if a parent has raised a concern but doesn't want confrontation.
Having seen this sort of harassment boy to girl, I can imagine that girls might do it too. I think it is power thing rather than because they genuinely fancy someone to be honest. Most kids are pretty shy at exposing their feelings in that way.
would you be thinking along the same lines if a boy was 'hitting' on your DD?
I think the first thing I would do would be to ask your DD to start keeping a list of incidents, with dates, times, places, if it was witnessed by anyone, etc.
Then if and when you do approach the school, you can demonstrate that this is a persistent problem.
At my DCs school I would tell HOY. They might well do some No means No, how to let down people who fancy you but you don't fancy in PSE and assembly. As well as keep an eye. They also know why this girl has come to the school and if she has social communication issues.
Define "hit on": what did the girl do? Did she take "no" for an answer?
"Hitting on" is not necessarily sexual harassment.
talk to the head. This is pretty distressing for your daughter
Could she say "no" in the same way she would to a boy? What exactly happened?
I would personally talk to the kid who is complaining; only to ensure if its the whole truth or a perception.
There are a lot of girls who are just too sensitive and do not like a new comer in their class, much less a different looking one.
Mum please give a thought about all the adjustments and alterations a girl goes through while she moves school. She is put into a jar of strangers and a whole lot of new routines and rituals. She needs a friend to help her with the transition. If your DD would not like to be that friend, she can politely point her to another friend or alternate help.
In case you are extremely sure your DD was harassed, as I would personally do with my own DD, I would only ask her to give the girl a second chance and do as threebeeonegee has said
Butnon the other hand, sexual harassment needs to be taken extremely seriously- it does happen in schools, and is often minimised. And your dd needs to know you are on her side.
I think some poster-me included- are reacting a bit to your use of language- "hit on" is an odd way to put it. Could you tell us some more about it?
Thank you for the replies. Lots of things to consider as I knew there would be, although I had not included not being believed which seems to be the biggest matter.
DD is 15. New girl in her class and originally DD was asked to be her buddy and show her the ropes because timetables were similar, which means this girl is in most of DD's lessons. DD is a freindly but quiet and polite kind of personality.
I didnt think "hit on" was old fashioned. Its used a lot here. By this term I mean heavy flirting of the kind you might see between a boy and a girl usually who are becoming an item, except this case the advances are unwanted. The new girl is open about her sexuality. DD has told her but she continues. It started out with friendliness and making compliments about her looks and hair and sitting by DD etc. and then went on to more suggestive comments about going out with her and apparently the girl is very touchy / feely and this has also become more intimate. Girl is also claiming my DD is her "girlfriend" - all of which could be interpreted differently but my DD says "everyone in class" knows what this girl means. There is supposed to be a non contact rule in school but no one enforces it for the older boys and girls and its laughed at.
It has been witnessed by several teachers, mostly they have seen it and said nothing. On Thursday one teacher heard a comment, made a joke of it but later moved my DD to a different work group. DD was upset because she was taken from her friends (and they were the cleverest group) and she was put with a less able, but not bottom group for working. I had got het up at this initially but when DD said what had been going on and that when teacher moved her she "winked" knowingly, I realised she was trying to deal with it.
But why move DD when DD is not at fault? Why should DD suffer educationally?
So, its a dilemma. If we contact the school we wont get believed and DD will be put in lower groups to separate them possibly? Or we say nothing and it carries on and DD gets more upset because girl wont take no for an answer?
Or there is trouble? Or something else?
Contact the school. It is unusual for a girl of 15 to be moved to a new school, there may well be background information that you know nothing about. If your DD gets moved to lower groups, then complain about that too. The school should be able confront the girl herself, although if they have rules they do not enforce they may be a bit weak. If it continues, then you need to bring up the phrase "sexual harassment", I would start by just saying the behaviour is upsetting your DD and making her feel uncomfortable.
I would also encourage your DD to speak up for herself, she will have to deal with unwanted advances throughout life and needs to be very clear in saying "No".
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