Why would a teacher do this?

(60 Posts)
numbum Sun 13-Oct-13 22:02:36

Before I post, I want to say I will be speaking to DD's teacher but wanted to make sure there wasnt an obvious reason for the teacher's actions (hence posting here!)

Y2 DD is able. Reading level 15/16 from school plus her own choice of books from the library. Writing had just reached a L3 at the end of Y1. Maths, she is on the G&T register but I think its in a low ability class and she is around a level 2b/2a.

Over the weekend she has been very quiet, crying over silly little things and refusing to do her homework for the first time ever. I finally managed to get her to talk this evening and she said she couldnt do her homework, is rubbish and 'has a mind that doesnt work as quickly as others'. On further questioning it seems as if she's been moved to sit on the SEN table.

She has told me who she is now sat with and I know they are the SEN children.

Why would her teacher move her to this table?

MidniteScribbler Mon 14-Oct-13 21:37:51

Oceansurf - It makes no sense. For starters, any decent teacher isn't teaching using worksheets, so can we just bust that myth right now. A decent teacher will be providing authentic learning experiences that allow students to develop their understanding of a topic. And it works perfectly well with a mixed ability group of students. Google social constructivism. I've never groups students by ability level, it's actually not the most effective arrangement for all students being able to achieve their full potential.

The whole concept of a "SEN table" (apart from a desperate failure of person first language) is discriminatory and quite frankly, disgusting. A capable teacher shouldn't need a TA sitting with every student with additional needs at the same time, and this is exactly what leads to the sort of language in the OPs posts about 'low ability' because people can't wrap their heads around the simple fact that children can be twice exceptional. If a suitable environment is provided, all students should be able to work with mixed groups.

RussiansOnTheSpree Mon 14-Oct-13 19:55:56

Ocean Oi! It's not me equating SEN conditions with low ability! It's the OP. I know that SEN doesn't mean low ability. My DD2 is the very definition of a high flier - G&T in everything - and she has severe SEN.

EmmaGellerGreen Mon 14-Oct-13 19:50:49

What very poor practise that a governor knows what children have statements or IEPs and for what reason! Governors should never know details about individual children. Also disgusted that as a governor you can not tell the diggerence between a CHILD WITH SEN (not a sen child) and a child's ability. Also shocking practise to have children with sen at one table. I say as a governor with responsibility for children with sen. Suggest you should look to do some training!

mrz Mon 14-Oct-13 19:48:42

a good TA knows when to step in and when to step back ... planning for a TA to sit with a group day in and day out is bad practice...these are the very children who need a teacher most! and aren't getting one

moldingsunbeams Mon 14-Oct-13 19:42:27

Mrz that is our problem with dd, the TA at the old school was lovely and amazing but she was sat continually at the table and now there is not one she struggles to work independently because she has never been given the skills how to.

moldingsunbeams Mon 14-Oct-13 19:41:00

I used to be a governor, I also used to be chair of governors, while we new how many children in school had sen, how many were on IEP we did not know who those children were or their names and I would be flipping furious if that information was shared with governors (I know it isn't at dds school) especially since governors can often be parents in school and therefore part to the jungle drums of gossip.

mrz Mon 14-Oct-13 19:39:01

Having a TA sat at a SEN table angry bad! bad! bad! creates a dependency ghetto! Having a SEN table [rolls eyes] ...speechless!

Oceansurf Mon 14-Oct-13 19:26:13

Russians SEN doesn't mean low ability necessarily! Just needing support. Likewise, a G+T pupil, who is standing out work wise as being on their own, may well be on that table.

I think if you asked most teachers, they actually do group children by ability, especially in numeracy. You can have many different levels in one class. In other words, lots of differentiated work going on. If the guidance/questions are on a worksheet, you would waste half the lesson handing out the work if they weren't grouped together. Also, how awful and obvious would that be? Sitting on a table and watching your friends get a worksheet whilst you wait for the 'easier' one? Or worse, names being read out to come and collect the 'appropriate' work? Quite often, children aren't aware that they have a different sheet from the table next to them. Same lesson, just different questions.

Why are so many people so hmm about it? Surely you can see it makes sense?

jojane Mon 14-Oct-13 19:10:50

My ds1 has SEN, he is extremely intelligent but has/had other special needs that might be in some peoplesminds associated with "low intelligence special needs" he has an IEP! For BOTH his high intelligence and his other needs such as fine motor skills and toileting issues.

moldingsunbeams Mon 14-Oct-13 19:09:12

Please please please do not equate sen to low ability or I may implode.

On paper my ten year old is a level 2, she thinks she is thick and stupid and rubbish at everything, off paper she scored assessments (to discover what her issues where) at 14/15 years.

She is NOT low ability, she has a learning need which prevents her from processing from head to paper, the current one size fits all school system square peg in a round hole prevents her from working to that level on paper. When she leaves the bounds of school and is able to use PCs and spell checkers and programs which work around her writing issues she will fly.

Her mind is now slow at all. She was explaining to me not long ago how a heart bypass works. It is the signals from her brain to paper which let her down.

There are many children like her who mentally are bright but struggle to get it on paper.

My dad who is exactly like dd was call slow by school, in primary he was bottom of the class, in secondary he was too. When he left the restrictions of school and went to college he flew and finished his degree at the top of his class.

keepsmiling12345 Mon 14-Oct-13 19:03:58

It seems OP still thinks her use of "SEN table" is purely "not diplomatic or PC" rather than demonstrating a blatant misunderstanding of how a SEN may manifest itself. I'm afraid I simply do not believe that you know all the children have statements or IEPs for low ability because you a friends with their parents. As I said, my DD is in y2, talks about all the children in her class, I am friends with vast majority of parents, and I wouldn't even begin to claim I know who has exactly what learning abilities or challenges.

And if you are a Governor and using any knowledge you've obtained through that role to query what table your DD is sitting on then I'm afraid I think that is unforgivable.

RussiansOnTheSpree Mon 14-Oct-13 18:58:26

It's an abuse of position. Apart from the discriminatory attitude on display.

ipadquietly Mon 14-Oct-13 18:52:06

Any information taken to our governors' meetings has children's names blanked out. There is no discussion about specific teachers, children or cohorts. Governors should be looking at trends, not personal data.

It is shocking that, as a governor, you are party to information about specific children, and, furthermore, that you are using this information to question classroom management. shock

sparklekitty Mon 14-Oct-13 18:45:34

You DD does have a kind of SEN if she is G&T. It could be that the LA group always have an adult with then and therefore she would always have an adult to stretch her (I'm guessing she is doing different work to the others on the table)

mrz Mon 14-Oct-13 18:32:53

It sounds like poor practice all round.

RussiansOnTheSpree Mon 14-Oct-13 18:26:43

OP - you don't know that there are no high fliers with SEN in your DD;s class. You believe that, but you don't know it. Governor or no. You clearly thing child with SEN = low ability so your own prejudice may be blinding you to the facts. Many people are surprised when they find out that I and my DCs have SEN conditions - because they do not realise that you can have an SEN condition and a Cambridge degree, or superb GCSEs, or ace the 11+.

Feenie Mon 14-Oct-13 18:17:33

You shouldn't know who is/isn't on an IEP or know why they need one whether you are a governor or not, though.

Gileswithachainsaw Mon 14-Oct-13 18:12:38

Yes I think you do. He should not be telling anyone that their minds are slower. Their job is surely to encourage children to work to the best of their ability whatever that ability is. And if he was referring to the children in his class then he shouldn't be divulging information about the children.

numbum Mon 14-Oct-13 18:09:27

I dont know Giles and it has been playing on my mind all day. I think I need to find out though

numbum Mon 14-Oct-13 18:08:46

The 'SEN' table in DD's class are the low ability children. Hence me connecting the two in my post. There are no SEN 'high fliers' in her class.

My DD is not rude. You can bitch about me til the cows come home, I dont offend easily. Leave my SIX year old out of it though thanks

Gileswithachainsaw Mon 14-Oct-13 18:08:02

What on earth could he have said to her? confused

RussiansOnTheSpree Mon 14-Oct-13 18:05:07

Also - I'm horrified that a GOVERNOR would conflate having SEN and being of Low Ability. Thank heavens you aren't a governor at any school my DCs attend.

RussiansOnTheSpree Mon 14-Oct-13 18:04:21

And yet not as rude as you or your DD.

numbum Mon 14-Oct-13 18:03:17

Calling my 6 year old ignorant is just rude! Yes the children on what I, not DD, called the SEN table all have statements or IEPs for extra help and are low ability. I know this because I am a governor at the school plus my DD is friends with the children, I am friends with their parents and they talk to me about their DC!

My use of the words 'SEN table' wasnt diplomatic or pc so I apologise for that.

Anyway, I have spoken to her teacher today and he's said he moved her just for a few days last week as he was giving her extra challenges to do and wanted her sat with a TA. I mentioned her saying about the slower minds and he said she's misinterpreted something he'd said and he'd talk to her. He didnt elaborate on that and we ran out of time to talk so I didnt get to ask.

Gileswithachainsaw Mon 14-Oct-13 17:55:23

Hopefully op will update.

I stand corrected - SOME, you are right.

A little curious as to how she knows do much about the academic abilities of the class. My dd tells me who she say with however I have no idea what the abilities of the table are.

How does she know it's a low ability class.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now