Aggressive child in nursery with dd

(34 Posts)
Idontknowwhoiam Mon 16-May-16 19:58:14

My daughter is being hit on a regular basis by a child in her nursery class. She is 4 and this child will be moving with her to reception so is either also 4 or will be soon.

I know this child does not have a SEN diagnosis, I also know his older brother is massively disruptive in class. His brother throws chairs, equipment etc around the class room, is generally nasty. (As a parent helper, brother hit me twice leaving a mark.)

So younger brother hits my daughter (and other children in the class) regularly. She has had a nasty black eye (toy was used ) and today has a large scratch down her forehead from this boy.
She says she tells the teacher (not 100% sure she does everytime) and he either gets put on the 'thinking mat' or if its particularly aggressive or persistent he's taken to the head.

She comes home most days telling me he has hurt her, I've spoken to the class teacher and the head teacher and I've been told that she needs to just tell him to stop or tell them so they can deal with it.

This is obviously not going to work as the teachers intervention isn't stopping this child's behaviour so why would he stop if my dd tells him to?!

My question is what can I do about this? As he gets bigger, he's going to be able to hurt my dd and the other children more.
His behaviour is going to be disrupting their education and she already mentions him as we walk into school, hoping he won't hit her that day.

What rights do these children have over this other child, how far can I push for something to be done or should we be resigned to him forever being allowed to 'think' about his actions.... its not enough and getting away with it at 3/4 is surely just going to cement the behaviour.

Ps. This has been ongoing since September.

Pps. Sorry for the massive post and thanks for getting this far!

my2bundles Tue 17-May-16 10:16:18

Just because a child does not have a diagnosis does not mean there are no special needs, my autistic child was once undiagnosed. Speak to school about your concerns then kept them deal wth it. They quite rightly are in no position to discuss this child's needs with you, he could be undergoing assesments now which you are not entitled to know about.

Idontknowwhoiam Tue 17-May-16 10:59:38

I don't expect the school to tell me, I know the child and family in question.
The school deal with sen children very well and have 2 units for autistic children too.
There are 2 autistic children in the class and they have one to one support.
The child is aggressive, probably learned from the older brother I mentioned.
Regardless of his educational needs, hoe much abuse do the other children have to put up with before something is done?

Alfieisnoisy Tue 17-May-16 11:06:05

My son has ASD which wasn't diagnosed at that young age.

Your DD has a right to be safe in school.
Likewise this child has a right to enough support in order to stop him harming other children and help him find better ways of communicating his feelings.

DS very rarely hit other children...mostly he used to run off and hide when overwhelmed by his feelings.

I would be taking this up with the school, your daughter has a right not to be hit.

WanderingTrolley1 Tue 17-May-16 11:06:16

Hoe do you know the hold doesn't have a diagnosis?

WanderingTrolley1 Tue 17-May-16 11:06:29

Child, not hold

PhilPhilConnors Tue 17-May-16 11:10:27

My child didn't have a diagnosis until he was 10. No diagnosis doesn't mean no SN.

Go to the head and ask how they are safeguarding your dd. She should not be being hurt in a regular basis, neither should she be responsible for telling the boy to stop. He should be supervised better so these incidents are prevented.
Sounds like the little boy, and his older brother need more support than they are getting.

sonlypuppyfat Tue 17-May-16 11:11:29

My DS had a problem with a boy in his class who used to hit him and once even peed on him. I bought this up with the teacher who told me that they couldn't do anything as he was entitled to his education!

WhattodoSue Tue 17-May-16 14:01:26

Your dd shouldn't be hit. Your DD should be able to feel safe at school. I'd say that the teachers need to keep a closer eye to prevent such behaviour. I'm surprised by their lack of response.

However, I'm also very surprised to hear a parent call a child nasty. It is an incredibly strong and unpleasant description for anyone, let alone a child. I agree with the poster above who said this boy and his brother need more help. And compassion. For whatever reason, something isn't right for them.

soapboxqueen Tue 17-May-16 17:12:22

Your dd being hurt isn't acceptable. The school need to have a plan in place that doesn't include your dd doing their job for them. However, they may not share with you what their plan actually is. You need to keep going back until it is sorted.

At such a young age, nobody can say that a child won't get a diagnosis of something in the future. However, the fact that this child is struggling to behave like the other children means there is a problem anyway. This child needs extra support which is an sen.

The fact that the brother also has these issues, does not mean they are learned behaviours. Many conditions have a genetic element. The fact that the school also has an ASD base, does not mean they are defacto good with sen.

We had a similar issue years ago.
Ds was at nursery with a boy who was wild, his mum used to let him play out at 2/3 and he had a very unstable home life.
He attacked ds constantly.
They went to the same primary together where the boy continued his behaviour but not towards ds, he bit, kicked etc and that was both boys and girls.
He was also violent towards teachers and threw stuff around the classroom.
I actively made sure I did not apply to the same secondary school as him and his behaviour has continued there and he's been suspended many times ( I know the family ).
A few months ago the boy came to my house and told me he has just been diagnosed with autism. My ds has autism too and was diagnosed at 8, now 13.
Children do not normally behave like this for no reason. I always had time for the boy in question as felt very sorry for him as he had a tough start and was written off by pretty much everyone and it's taken 10 years to diagnose him.
Sad that so many children slip through the net.
However, your priority is dd and I would be asking the school for a copy of their behaviour policy to see what should happen if this continues.
The school have a duty of care towards all children and that especially includes ones being terrorised by classmates.
There may be more to this boys situation.

retrorobot Tue 17-May-16 19:34:12

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Idontknowwhoiam Tue 17-May-16 20:20:01

Thank you for your comments. I swing between feeling kind of dad for this little boy, who for whatever reason, is clearly behaving in a way that is going to make him unpopular with the staff and children and wishing he wasn't in the class.
I'm not completely unreasonable but the fact that he was sent to the head for flicking a bobble in a girls eye on his first day and just hadn't improved his behaviour since makes me feel he needs more than what he's getting.
I am concerned about him too, I don't know how much pressure the family put on school for something to be done for him either...
If the shoe were on the other foot I'd be fighting tooth and nail to get support for my child who clearly doesn't fit in in mainstream at the moment.
I do get angry when my dd is physically marked and I'm scared for her future in the class with this boy for all of primary school.

There really is no easy period in a child's life is there sad

bojorojo Tue 17-May-16 20:45:45

Very young children who are violent towards others almost certainly have a special need at that time in their lives. They were not born violent! If a child is violent towards other children, the nursery school does have a duty to keep other children safe as well as a duty to educate and help this little boy. It is perfectly possible for the nursery to assign extra help for him so that he gradually learns what he cannot do. I feel sending him to the Head is a fruitless exercise at this age! Exclusion from nursery, which is before statutory school age, is not a viable option. He is at nursery to improve his behaviour.

It is reasonable to ask that your child is kept safe because the school has a duty to do this and I would be protesting loudly at this level of violence. What are the school proposing to do to keep your DD safe? This does not compromise confidentiality. The school could tell you, for example, that he is being assigned a nursery assistant on a one to one basis during play. Are other parents concerned? The school does need to meet this boy's needs and they may also have the assistance of a behaviour specialist who will give the nursery strategies. Does the nursery have a qualified teacher in charge? The nursery should have a SEN policy and follow it if a special need is evident, even if it is short-term. They should also have a behaviour policy. Ask to see it. Are they following it? You can ask questions without asking about personal details. I share your concerns.

MadSprocker Tue 17-May-16 21:06:08

I imagine that the school is very aware of this child and his behaviour, particularly as his older brother displays violence too. Unfortunately a picture of the need has to be built up before any support can be offered, and in our LEA, only a child with a statement (or whatever it is called now) is entitled to one to one support.

bojorojo Wed 18-May-16 00:42:25

Entitlement to support is not the same as the nursery giving one to one support to a child to keep other children safe. (I am sure it is rare!) It may not be what the nursery wants to do because of the expense and without additional funding, this will be a problem. However, it could be done if they want it to be and if this is part of early years provision at a school, they have resources they could use. It is not unheard of for nursery children to be going down the statement route or family support route, or both.

At the very least the nursery should closely supervise during free play. I have also seen that some nurseries will allow a child prone to violent outbursts to play only with a very small number of children which is then tightly supervised so that flash points are averted and the staff learn more about the child so that behaviour can be improved. Nothing will happen unless the nursery takes very pro-active action. They cannot afford to be reactive.

uhoh1973 Wed 18-May-16 07:10:44

I feel for you and in your situation I would do what I needed to to keep my child safe including moving schools if the school are not taking action.
We had a toddler in our village who was violent. He doesn't have SEN. I don't know why most posters start talking about SEN. He just had inadequate parenting. He kept hitting our child in front of his mother who didn't seem to notice... in the end I told her we couldn't play with them any more. The mother took it badly but who cares? Who wants to watch their child get thumped? They then started nursery with us. Lucky for us he moved on to other children to thump (boys). They are now aged 6 and he has improved but is widely known as a bully though not as bad as he was.
His little brother will be in our son's class...
I would keep on at the school. It's disgusting they let this happen to your child. Why should her day be ruined by another child? If you get no joy move schools.

drspouse Wed 18-May-16 10:40:18

Very young children who are violent towards others almost certainly have a special need at that time in their lives.

This. A child who needs extra support to go to a mainstream nursery or school by definition has special educational needs. If you are thinking that SEN means "a diagnosis of ASD or a learning disability" then no, it doesn't. It means they need extra help in education. They have different needs to other children. Even if this child DOES have a diagnosable disability, you have no right to know whether they do or not, same as with any other diagnosis.

You may think that their "needs" are to be told to blooming well behave and made to sit in the naughty corner until they do. You might want to try that with a child like this and see just how effective it is. Working out what's causing the behaviour, stepping in to prevent it, making sure that what happens after the behaviour doesn't reinforce it, not allowing them to access situations that can get out of hand, and making sure their home and any other environments are on board are all steps the setting should be taking that they would NOT need to take for a child who doesn't have such needs.

Obviously your DD does have a right to be safe. And as PP have said they can give you some limited information about how they are doing that. So do keep asking what they are doing.

I say this as the parent of a 4 year old who has a tendency to lash out - usually when he doesn't feel safe (which is often in a situation when other children would not have a problem) but who doesn't have a specific diagnosis. Telling me or the nursery that he needs time out or the naughty corner is NOT helping, because those make him feel more unsafe.

Potatoface2 Wed 18-May-16 10:51:25

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

drspouse Wed 18-May-16 11:10:15

potatoface they DO have a special need. The special need is for school/nursery to work out how to integrate them into the setting, because the same arrangements as work for everyone else, don't work for them. They are not as emotionally/behaviourally mature as the other children in the classroom. Or possibly they have behaviours that the other children didn't show even when younger. Either way, they are not at their age level and the school needs to make suitable arrangements.

Or are you saying they just shouldn't be allowed to come to school/nursery? From age 2/3? And that school/nursery have no place in enabling children to grow emotionally/behaviourally?

PhilPhilConnors Wed 18-May-16 11:27:15

Children develop at different rates. If they are not behaving appropriately in a setting, it's because, for whatever reason, the expectations on them outstrip their abilities.
They may not have a diagnosable SN, but they do need extra support to help them learn, and to keep others safe.

I'm getting fed up of certain posters who have no idea who keep coming on as the voice of authority to tell parents of DC with SN how they're getting it wrong.

Also, retrobot, a child having a SN doesn't mean they are any more special than any other child anywhere in the world, it simply means they need more support than NT DC in order to have the same opportunities.

Unfortunately many schools don't take these needs seriously, or follow the procedures they have agreed to, which then means that some children find it more difficult to access education, which all children have a right to, and also means that some are more likely to lash out due to frustration. Not only has the child who has been hurt been let down, but the child who needs extra support is also being let down, as they are being put into situations they can't cope with adequately.

To quote an amazing book (The Explosive Child), all children will do well if they can. If a child is acting out constantly, and normal punishments aren't doing anything, there is a reason behind that, whether unidentified SN or family issues, and if those reasons aren't identified and the child supported in a way that works for them, what is their future?

PhilPhilConnors Wed 18-May-16 11:31:38

Sorry, SN does not always mean a neurological condition.
My next door neighbour has a severely disabled DC, she is very bright and capable academically, but she can't and never will walk.
Should she not have more support? She needs a 1:1 most of the time to help her and support her to be able to get as much out of school as her able bodied peers.
It sounds like the child in the op needs extra support too.
It seems when it comes to invisible disabilities plenty of posters don't give a damn, they must simply be naughty. #ablismexists

uhoh1973 Wed 18-May-16 12:13:03

The point is its not the OP's concern or interest why the child is doing this to her child (that is for the school and parents to figure out) - the point is her child has the right to go to school safely.

drspouse Wed 18-May-16 12:18:34

The OP seems to be trying to figure it out though - by mentioning the lack of SEN diagnosis (how can she know that? I'm not telling all the other parents at nursery about our DS' diagnostic pathway) and the disruptive brother.

I completely agree that the nursery should be trying to protect her DD and should be letting her know how they are doing that.

fanjoforthemammaries Wed 18-May-16 12:20:58

I missed the memo for it being ignorant disablist post day on MN. Again.

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