11yr old ds in tears over summer school.

(82 Posts)
kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 11:38:08

Ds's new secondary school have sent an email to invite him to 5 half days. He will be starting in September. This will take place in August.
He is flat out refusing and I do feel for him. They have liaised with his primary school and he has been part of groups throughout his primary school life for additional support which has done him the world of good.
I need to respond today to confirm his place but I feel like it's causing him so much upset at the thought of it I'm tempted to say no although I think he needs to do it. He's currently under cahms as last year he was so down about the pressure of year 6 he wasn't sleeping and was in tears every night.
It sounds very casual with activities revolving around maths and literacy. Lunch provided, no charge.
What do I do?

Emochild Fri 22-Jul-16 11:39:43

Tell them you are on holiday

Your son needs a break

noblegiraffe Fri 22-Jul-16 11:41:20

Bloody hell if he's under CAMHs and in tears then don't send him. It's not compulsory and his mental health is more important. If he's not well then he won't achieve whether he goes to summer school or not.

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 11:42:31

I know that's what I want do. I want the best for him but who'd be jumping for joy over summer school?

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 11:43:57

I'm nearly in tears here myself. I don't want him to feel like he's got his way but at the same time yes his mental health is more important.

HeyMacWey Fri 22-Jul-16 11:44:39

I'd accept it but not push him to go if he didn't want to.

A light touch approach sounds good, but if he changes his mind nearer to the time at least you've still got a place for him.

noblegiraffe Fri 22-Jul-16 11:45:25

If you don't want him to feel like he's got his way, then make an agreement with him that he doesn't have to do the summer school if he agrees to do the summer reading challenge at the library, and some maths practice on the Internet (or something like that)?

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 11:47:40

i don't want to accept and then not turn up. There's no way he's going to change his mind.
He's currently in his room with the door blocked sad. He's soaked my pillow with tears before he went in there.

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 11:49:49

That's a good idea to make an agreement. I just feel like I'm making him miserable if I confirm.

amidawish Fri 22-Jul-16 11:50:34

is the summer school for all the kids? or is it due to additional support needed?

if the latter i'd let him skip it

if the former i'd tell him he has to go for the first day only. it might be fun. it is probably designed to make september less daunting.

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 11:50:55

He's very negative and when he gets low it's so worrying.

rollonthesummer Fri 22-Jul-16 11:51:04

I wouldn't send him!

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 11:52:44

It's for additional support and to make September less daunting. Yes other kids are going but the other child who he knows from primary school isn't going.

monkeywithacowface Fri 22-Jul-16 11:54:55

Just out of curiosity why shouldn't it feel like "he's got his way"? Would it be such a bad thing for him to know his feelings are being taken into account and that he isn't going to be forced into something he clearly finds distressing? It's the summer holidays, he found year six stressful, he needs this downtime before going to secondary.

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 12:00:33

monkeywithacowface,
I agree. As soon as I saw the email I knew it was going to go down badly. With regards to getting his own way I'm just worried if I decline the offer I won't be doing him any good. He excludes himself from his peers sometimes and this could be an opportunity to get to know some of his year group. You know, who's the grown up here? At the same time his mental health comes first.

hunibuni Fri 22-Jul-16 12:01:11

Can he tell you what is upsetting him so much? I would be inclined to accept the place and then see how things are closer to the day. Has he got friends who are moving with him or would this be a chance to meet potential classmates? I only ask because DS struggled with the transition because there were only a few of his primary school friends who moved to the same school and they were all in different classes. He missed the first 2 weeks of the first term due to having surgery, so he missed out on orientation and getting to know the people in his classes, which made that term a bigger struggle than it needed to be.

Following a lot of discussion with the school, they started holding 3 day summer schools in the groups that the kids were going to be in so that they would have a chance to get to know each other. It was mostly team building type stuff and being shown their way around the school etc. DD is planning to go to the same school and I'll be glad that she will get the chance to meet people before school starts.

GeordieJeans Fri 22-Jul-16 12:03:07

My friends son had something similar. He has some additional needs. It wasn't to do school work but to get to know some of the children from other primary schools as well as familiarise themselves with the school.

They did things like learning how to use the combination lock on the lockers and finding out where their classrooms were for each subject.

hunibuni Fri 22-Jul-16 12:05:37

Oops cross post. I would discuss it when he's calmer in a it's just so you can meet people way and leave it at that. I just wonder if September is going to be even more daunting if he's so upset now. Is there anyone from CAHMS that you could talk to? This raising children lark isn't easy, is it?

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 12:07:22

Thanks for all the replies I'm taking it all into consideration.

Scarydinosaurs Fri 22-Jul-16 12:09:18

Why doesn't he want to go?

It's a shame as it sounds like it could be good for making friends before school starts.

Give him a day to decide, and of course turn it down if he doesn't want to go, but let him really think about it first.

Lurkedforever1 Fri 22-Jul-16 12:10:26

I think any benefit of the additional support will be lost if he is that upset about going.

I'd try and go through whatever reasons he has for not wanting to go, and reassure him with logical explanations why he doesn't need to worry, big up all the positives, and offer the deal that if he goes the first day he doesn't have to return if he hates it, but if he was still that upset I wouldn't force it.

Different if it was a childish tantrum objection, but that's not the case.

amidawish Fri 22-Jul-16 12:11:01

Do you know what they will be doing?

maths, english, school work?

or

getting to know each other, team building, finding way round the school, using the lunch hall, lockers, sports etc.

it might be really useful if it is the latter (i imagine it is, why would they bring them in to do schoolwork?)

hesterton Fri 22-Jul-16 12:11:17

They are more fun than work, and it means he will have new friends already before the start of term. He'll be orientated and ahead of the others with regards to settling in, having got to know some staff and possibly older students if any are helping.

It really isn't onerous. We used to have to let down so many children who really wanted to come because of numbers.

kissmethere Fri 22-Jul-16 12:11:23

I think I need to emphasise to him about the team building and meeting new people. He's still upset but I need to talk to him.

Nydj Fri 22-Jul-16 12:11:50

Would it be possible to negotiate that he goes for first two sessions and then if he really hates it, you won't insist that he goes for the rest of the sessions? I appreciate that this may not be possible if your son has 'pulled down the shutters' on the whole concept - I have a child on the autistic spectrum.

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