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Not allowed to view CCTV ... thoughts/advice please(26 Posts)
Ds is in year 6. On Thursday I got a call from school to say he'd been involved in an altercation with another boy at lunchtime. Other boy kicked ds, ds retaliated and hit other boy with a tennis racquet he was holding at the time. Both boys have been spoken to, ds is complaining of a sore back, do I want to collect him and take him to GP. I collected him more because I knew ds would be extremely upset internally by the incident. School said on the phone to get him checked as it would be a shame if he had to miss his school trip away (for 2 nights) the following day!
School said ds is complaining of a sore back, however they have viewed the CCTV and said ds seems to have been kicked in the front not the back. CCTV images are not crystal clear.
So, took ds to GP, he said his back and 1 side rib was sore when walking and when talking a deep breath in. GP said internal bruising, rib will be sore due to the force trauma.
Ds told me exactly what happened, why etc. He points to exactly where he was kicked and the exact rib that is sore. He went on the trip away on Friday with painkillers. Not one member of staff asked how he was, I did tell 2 members though at the end of conversations with them about medication etc.
Tried to see HT on Friday but she was busy with interviews all day. She rang me at the end of the school day. In a nutshell, she is adamant ds was kicked in the front so cannot understand why his back is sore, she says maybe he hit it on the wall. I asked if I could view CCTV but was told no, under data protection rules. Absolutely no. So even though I know who the other child involved is, school told me who it is, and even though my child was involved, I'm not allowed to view the footage. I can't believe that's right? HT said she didn't know what I wanted to happen from all this now. I said I want to view CCTV as ds is adamant where he was kicked yet school are saying he wasn't kicked in that place. I said I wanted other boys parents to be told of this incident - HT didn't know if they had been.
I doubt they have as I only got a phone call because ds complained of being sore. Otherwise, I wouldn't have been told about it!
The other boy is known for extreme behaviour and measures are in place to help him. His parents are on board with school and agree his behaviour is unacceptable. All are working together to help the boy.
Any thoughts/advice on whether I should be able to view the CCTV?
I am sorry your ds got hurt but I don't think you should see the footage either.
Hope he's feeling better
No you won't be allowed to view the footage. I don't know any school with a policy that would allow this. The footage is not just of your child.
I'm not sure what is to be gained from it unless you think the school is deliberately obfuscating what happened but to what end?
I am quite shocked school told you who the other child is! Schools don't usually disclose that info!
As others have said what do you wish to gain from the cctv ? Sue the child???
Wow, thanks all. Seems I'm wrong in my thinking ...
I assumed I could view the footage as it's of my child being attacked (for want of a better phrase). I was told who the other boy was by the school in the initial phone call, so in my eyes there's no data protection issue. But my thinking seems to be in the minority! I would have thought anyone who's child had been physically attacked would want to look into things further.
He's back from his trip away, his back and ribs are not hurting now so that's good news! He's had a fab weekend, the best weekend of his life he says, so that's also great!
lamya ... Obviously I don't want to sue the child! What a stupid thing to say.
I'm not sure what I'm expecting to gain by seeing the CCTV footage to be honest. The schools blase attitude to the whole thing has really angered me. They seem to be playing the incident down and basically calling my son a liar. I asked to see the footage after the HT said categorically ds was not kicked in the back - no matter how much I insisted ds was kicked in the back, she was just not interested.
The HT asked what I want from this. I want to know the boys parents were told of the incident and I guess I want the severity of the incident to be known. She's getting back to me tomorrow to let me know if the parents were told.
Thanks for your thoughts, advice and well wishes.
I think it might be worth calling the Information Commissioner about the data protection things. As much as you're not entitled to see data about another child, it is your right to see data about yours. So I wonder whether there isn't an expectation that they blot out the other child's face and let you see the recording.
It's called being sarcastic my love!!
You said the parents of the other child already know about his behaviour in general and are on board with school etc, so what is exactly do you want?? To put it in their face further??
Your son is ok now, so you should let the school deal with it...
* lamya* ... I asked for help and advice, not sarcasm, thanks. And it's certainly not a case of to put it in their face further ... Any parent should be told about their child's unprovoked violent attack which causes internal bruising to another child. It's that simple.
Thanks augusta ... I'll bear that in mind if I can't sort this out with school.
Your asking for opinions and this is an open board. I can say what I like, sarcastic or not.
Im sure the parents are aware of his outbursts as u have mentioned they are working with the school to help him and hopefully he will get the help he needs,
I asked for thoughts/advice on whether I should be allowed to view cctv. That's all. There's just no need to answer with sarcasm. Like I said previously, I think any parent would want the incident looked into further and treated appropriately - which at the moment it's not.
Even though his family are on board with school and help is put in place for him, does not mean incidents should be ignored or played down.
You should ask to see I copy of their cctv policy. In it, it will more than likely set out when they will release footage.
You could ask for a copy of it under data protection (subject access request) on behalf of your son. However, they would have to obscure any other people in it, which may mean you cannot actually see what happens anyway. They may also decide that paying for an outside agency to obscure the footage correctly would be too time consuming and therefore exempt them from providing it.
Even if they did let you see it, you don't have any right to know what steps or punishments have been taken with this other boy.
If you think they are deliberately down playing an issue for whatever reason and that puts your child at risk, having cctv evidence isn't going to help in the long run. They'll still be the ones making decisions day to day.
Now you mention it watching CCTV footage of many an incident at ds2's school would probably have been most informative. Suspect you would need sound as well though to fully unravel what happened.
The problem is if you ask now to see it after school has told you what happened you are basically saying you do not trust them to tell the truth. This is a serious accusation. In our experience once that breakdown of trust has happened the placement is put in jeopardy.
Your son is ok (thank god) so I don't get why you are dying to see the cctv footage, to see if he was hit from the front or back?? Seems odd to me. What is there to look into? This isn't a murder investigation!! School seem to be on top of the situation.
Your son retaliated with a tennis racket, I'm shocked school didn't do anything about that to be frank!!!
The problems I can see with you viewing/requesting cctv footage are:
- whilst you absolutely can make a DPA request to view it, once they remove anything identifying about the other child (which they certainly should) you won't see what you want to see
- cctv only captures a snapshot and can be very misleading. It doesn't capture what happened off camera or record sound. What you see isn't always the full story.
- what purpose would seeing it serve? Will you act differently depending on what you see?
I only asked to see cctv when school disputed where ds was kicked, and played down the incident. Ds was sent Home from school with a sore back following the incident .. And I was told "he says his back is sore but We don't see how as he was kicked in the front, not the back. Ds stood there and said no I was kicked in the back. Punched in the arm and kicked in the back. Pointed to exactly where he was kicked and the 1 rib that was also sore. It hurt when he walked and breathed in. This was 2 hours later, pain still severe. School was adamant he was not kicked in the back. Got to GP, ds pointed to,the exact same part of his back to show where he was kicked and the exact same rib. Phone call from HT the next day saying don't know how ds back is sore as he wasn't kicked there. I said ds is definite he was kicked in the back. HT then said maybe ds hit his back off the wall as he turned away ... No, ds is definite he was kicked in the back. This was the point when I asked if I could view the cctv. I assumed it would be fine as it involved my son and the other boy who they'd already told me about.
But I've been told I can't view it so that's that. I asked for advice purely because I thought (obviously wrongly) that I could view it as it was of my son and another known boy.
Oneineight ... It's not at all that I don't trust school to tell the truth ...but they're basically saying my son is a liar and denying point blank what happened, or that there could be more to it. Surely I'm allowed to question that when ds injuries show otherwise?
ruby ... They did do something about ds retaliating with the tennis racquet. After being kicked with such force I'm actually pleased he retaliated. Ds was playing tennis with a friend so hit out with what he had in his hand. But yes, he was reprimanded.
I don't want to go to great lengths .. I can't/don't want to let this attack be washed to the side like it's just a small spat. It wasn't.
In our experience once that breakdown of trust has happened the placement is put in jeopardy
A school that excluded a child because it had fallen out with his mother would be breaking the law.
It was in response to the comment above from One in Eight.
I understand your frustration. If someone is assaulted and reports an injury then being told not possible as you were hurt elsewhere is calling them a lair.
I'm sure you can view CCTV but as others have said they'd have to blot out a lot of it. I'd wonder what's to gain from fighting it?
Maybe you need to email a timeline of events and the discussion had so their is a paper trail and it is logged iyswim?
Just keep it factual. Eg called because DS back hurt, informed of altercation, DS has bruising to X part of body, saw go who dx ....., school say impossible as he wasn't kicked there, you not being to see CCTV. Ds maintaining injury is from kick and you have no reason to believe otherwise that the internal bruising was caused by a kick without evidence to the contrary.
(Eg without saying it but the injury is evidence and they aren't willing and can't prove otherwise)
Sorry I did not make myself clear. I did not mean the school would exclude but rather one (not the only) reason ds2's placement failed is that there were a string of incidents where there was discrepancy between schools and his version of events and we lost total confidence that they were handling him appropriately and we ended the placement not the school.
augusta .. If you mean my ds falling out with me then that's not the case at all. I don't know oneineight case, if you mean her. Tbh my thoughts hadn't even gone to troubles like that with school.
That's a great idea, thanks youare.
one .. I'm so sorry you've had such a rough ride with school. Hope things are better now for your ds.
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