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Long winded but please help(16 Posts)
Hi Im new here so please go easy.
The issue is my ds he was diagnosed type 1 diabetic last year i have been going in school each day as school would not have insulin needles on premises.
Frustrating but did for 7 months in this time he has been told he cant test his bloods he cant snack he cant drink he can treat hypos alone etc each time the diabetic nurse has told them look this is his life thats how it has to be please make it easy (he is 8 btw) throughout this slowly he lost friends they call him a baby as his mum goes in each day etc.
Just before xmas they finally said ok we will do it so nhs trained 2 teaching assistants brill to sit and watch as precaution thats all it needs.
Things started happening small things like he has to eat straight after injection they started doing it earlier than his class sitting so he eats alone.
Missed xmas party because although its a myth that diabetics have special food, children have to have fast acting insulin before anything that contains over 20g of carbs.
The school said they only had staff too oversee one injection per day (he injects himself from day one). Bullying got worse then last week he got kicked in tummy right where he injects it was sore so he told TA the one who sits with him her reply was well you should not have been fighting and off she went it was a trainee girl who sent him for ice pack.
Needless to say i complained mistake!
She denied it ,said she told him to get ice pack when i insisted look he insists you said it,since that day he has been blamed for taking ruler in play ground and hitting everyone by same TA but she never approached him and removed it he denies it he got sent to to deputy heads class about 3 times and shouted at in front of whole class for fighting he has never been in trouble in his life in school. Teachers have said quite the opposite he has literally been blamed for everything that happens on playground even other parents are shocked as the kids say he has not been fighting just the boys he has problems with have. Then finally after yet another attack off a boy who is very loud the same TA goes up to my son in the line from behind gets his arm leads him up the corridor backwards without a word takes him to DH class who balls and shouts about the whole school having enough of him gave him letter home and told him to write how he was fighting at lunchtime and his behavior is unacceptable.
I went in and complained that he felt intimidated and and i would not pull him by arm they should not either she denied it.
He asked to talk to them, said he wanted to tell them, when we got there it was 2 governors 2 teachers and ta. Head said he was lying the ta actually said dont you remember i held your hand as you looked upset i explained you remember it wrong he stood up and said yes you did then you told me to sign the letter,the head said to him your lying he said again no i am not that is what happened ta started crying saying you have upset me.
He looked and said do you think i like being hit day after day but you do nothing?
head looked and told me that it needs addressing that he is obviously lying.
I have never seen him more grown up and adamant about anything he left and said he wants to leave and now is petrified of what the teachers will say to him.
Please help any suggestions would be appreciated.
There seem to be two issues here: managing his diabetes and some behavioural/friendship problems on the playground.
The priority, I would say, is to sort out the diabetes. All schools have a duty of care towards pupils, and from what you say, they're falling far short of it with him. You shouldn't need to be going in daily.
Someone more knowledgeable will be along in a moment.
Hi there,yes I just wanted to give background as I think that's why we have ended up here.
I don't know anyone else with health issues and as its not technically senco he does have health plan but they see it as a pain school don't get funding for health issues and believe it or not have no obligation to care for him in school that's why I think maybe they thought I'd give up on school I never so now they are taking it out on him or am I being paranoid it's been going on almost a year march last year that each day is harder for him and it's just cruel now.
Wow, what a nightmare.
Are you on the CWD mailing group? If not, I'd suggest joining up and posting on there, there are lots of parents who have gone through similar things with schools. linky
You should not have to be going in. There are several kids who are diabetic (type 1) in my DC school and they manage it just fine.
I am friends with one of the mums and she said the only difference is that her DC has the injection before eating (packed lunch all weighed out etc) whereas at home it is done after depending on how much the DC has eaten.
The other DC I know of has an insulin pump.
Personally if you think the Governors are siding with the HT as awful as it sounds I would be cutting my loses and looking for another school.
Whilst the issue of the insulin injections might have been the catalyst for the problems you currently face, the real issue is whether or not the school and you are at a point where there is no common ground. They appear to be adamant that your son is lying, you are adamant that he is not about his behaviour in school.
My feeling from the tone of your letter is that there is no way that you and your son are going to be comfortable at the school. I think therefore you need to investigate (without your son knowing) whether there is a possibility of transferring to another school. I say without your son knowing because the situation will only be worse if he thinks that he will move school.
They may not have an obligation to care for him but they have a duty of care which amounts to the same thing. If you had been unable to go to school every day and he had become seriously ill as a result of the school's refusal to help they would have been in big trouble.
I agree with Admission that your relationship with this school has broken down completely and you need to look into transferring your son to another school. Keep any evidence you have that your son is being bullied and the school is failing to deal with it plus anything you have that confirms their failure to deal properly with his diabetes. If you end up appealing for another school it will be useful.
Time to call the LEA
Your child has a serious, but manageable, condition and needs to be in a school which can support it.
Second, the school is allowing your child to be victimized because of his condition. I think a head calling your child a liar - whether they think it or not - is unprofessional and very harmful. She wasn't there, she doesn't know all the facts and although I respect HTs often feel the need to support their staff, staff often are protecting their own backs.
So ring the LEA and ask for help. Explain the situation, how unhappy your child is and how concerned you are - see what they suggest. I can assure you it will get back to the school - and is likely to be highly motivating.
The LA may insist you talk to the governors first.
If you do go to the LA or the governors make sure you include everything you've talked about here, not just the recent incidents. It really is not acceptable that the school refused to allow him to do things essential for his health and insisted on you going in with his insulin injections. They may have been in breach of the Equality Act and were certainly failing in their duty of care.
Sadly I am not surprised to hear your story. My daughter has a chronic condition and her school has discriminated against her and placed conditions on her participation in activities, such as me being there to supervise her. I thought that as I am a nurse I would be able to help educate and reassure them however this actually made it more difficult as they have pointed out that I may not be worried because I am a nurse and have skills and knowledge that they do not have. I have used the support of a charity dedicated to supporting families who have this condition. They have done a lot of research on the effects of discrimination in education on children with this condition which I have given to the head teacher. I have made it quite clear to them that this is discrimination and that in the UK this is illegal. All children have the legal right to equal access to education regardless of medical conditions. I have made it clear that I will be talking to OFSTED if there are more episodes of discrimination . I am sure they think I am a cranky old cow but I simply don't care, I will not allow them to do this to my child.
My advice to you is to contact Diabetes UK and any other charity who give support to people with diabetes. They may even have someone who can attend meetings with you. Talk to your consultant and diabetic nurse they may also support you. (My daughters consultant has spoken to the school). make it quite clear to the school that their behaviour is unacceptable and possibly illegal. When you are not present they have a duty of care to maintain your child's safety and well being, make it clear that you know this and that you will ensure there are consequences if anything happens to your child. Make a complaint to ofsted regarding safeguarding of your child, they need to know that your child is not physically safe at school and has been emotionally abused by head teacher (being called a liar).I think you may have to change schools as your son will not feel safe or happy if he stays at this school but I would not allow them to feel that you have crawled under a rock and that they have gotten away with this behaviour. When you look at other schools ask them how they support children with DM1 and bring an individual health care plan that has been signed by your consultant with you so they know what will be required of them.
At all times stay cool and calm , never let them think that you are crazy....not easy when you feel your child has been wronged by adults who should be protecting him but really important.
Also moving forward talk to your doctor and nurse about the possibility of your son having a long acting insulin like Lantus and/or a pump as I can assure you it will make life easier moving forward. Particularly in teenage years as your son gains independence.
i think there are two issues. deal with the diabetes separately. the issue of the behaviour of your son is more difficult to unpick and seems to have been badly dealt with both by yourself and the school. Rather than taking him with you to speak to the teacher or TA or whoever. You need to do this without him. Ending up in a shouting match is not the right thing for your son. You may have to accept that your son is not completely innocent. FWIW I have heard children swear that they are telling the truth only to find out later they have lied. I think you need to decide whether you can work with them or not. If you want your son to stay at this school, be prepared to listen to the school's take on what is happening. Ask for a meeting to discuss how to sort out the diabetes. Put the plan in writing. Include issues such as timings for lunch and what todo if there is any special class parties. Ask for any poor beahaviour incidents to be recorded and fed back to you at the end of the week so you can discuss them with your ds. Perhaps consider having a short meeting ever fortnight to discuss how he is doing and whether there is any improvement. You can use this time to discuss any problems. Try to take a calm measured approach. let your son see that you are working with the school. Listen to him but try not to over react and instantly take his side.
Not sure if this has been mentioned but afaik staff aren't under any obligation to check bloods or administer insulin so in a school where there are no volunteers for this, the parent or designated other will always have to go in, ridicule or not.
When myself and another staff member offered to train and take charge of midday checks etc of a child with diabetes (infant) mum was so grateful and remained extremely supportive of us until the child eventually left. You need a good relationship with the school and a detailed unique medical plan with school, parents and healthcare practitioners all involved as all diabetic children have different requirements. Our child ate before all his friends but could choose a friend to eat with so he wasn't on his own. This was with the backing of the parents as they felt us staff couldn't be expected to have a fractured lunch hour every day. They sent in special food like pizza bases that the cook could use so their child could have school lunches occasionally.
I agree that your situation doesn't sound retrievable, my above musings are possible things to consider in a new setting. Good luck!
Just a thought, your ds isn't reacting out of character at school and lashing out because his readings aren't being managed correctly maybe?
move school. use help from Diabetics charity to find out which one will be best. Do not rely on LEA = in my and friends' experience they close ranks and blame parents for child's problems. If possible, register as home ed until you get a suitable place. Get books from library/ WH Smiths to tide him over. It's much easier than putting up with the appalling ssituation you describe
You need to write a formal complaint to the governors about the bulling, the diabetes etc. if you have no luck, write to the LEA etc.
Can you go and watch him with out his knowledge at break time? It sounds like he is kicking back when he should be reporting verbal and physical attacks.
It might be worth looking at other schools but discussing his condition with the new heads first.
Hi all thank you for your kind words ,yes i agree relations are lost i am going to a school on monday with diabetes nurse we actually viewed it before christmas but hoped things would not get worse.
I did expect behavior issues when bloods high etc but he has been brill we carb count quite successful most days.
I think had the ht not been so adamant that her staff could do no wrong at all and that she had practically the whole staff willing to sign to say they witnessed yet son still said it happened the way he said i would be more cautious.
As it was, her recollection and teachers seemed to have lots of different versions and lots more things popping up that "he" had done yet all i have ever had is he is polite and clever.
I know children lie mine does too he is no angel they all play rough etc but giving the amount of genuine times he has had real reason to complain like locking blood monitor away leaving him alone to deal with hypos telling him he disrupts lessons can he not wait even one ta asked if he had a quicker snack to eat (he had a mini deli wrap halved plain).
Told he could not do swimming go on trips etc etc.
Yet all these even though upset he never once said please can you complain just make sure next time is better.
Yet this course of incidents really seemed to have hit a point with him he is actually disgusted with school and hes only 9 he says he never will step a foot in there.
Any way lessons learnt....
So i yet await school to return my call even though i thanked all staff for time help etc so i do hope it is what he wants.
On a plus side new school have said go in a few days just to settle routine at lunch time and that the most important thing is his learning.
Just a quick note to the teachers that replied saying they offered to help child blood monitoring at lunch, thats brill yes they do not have to so to offer is a big deal to a family a child newly diagnosed either goes one way or other sadly mine took it real bad yet all the issues in school actually took his mind off it.
Who knows one day things will be different i know the gov are working on it (shame other things they are not lol) i say bring back nurse lose these silly online homework packages and wii xboxes etc to replace pe lessons (yes schools do this)sorry if i offend but they are expensive and money could be spent elsewhere.
thanks for going easy x
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