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Competing needs - what would you do?

(57 Posts)
KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 14:41:22

DS2(6) has being undergoing various assessments with SALT and OT and has been referred to the comm paed. It looks so far as if there is SLCD that is secondary to ASD.

There is another boy in DS2's class who fits the bill perfectly for AS/ASD. Textbook. I have spoken about DS1 in particular and behavioural similarities in a subtle way. Nothing. Mum speaks to the class teacher after every day because of behavioural difficuties. Special dispensation is made for the child. Mum (used to be a secondary teacher) will watch him spin and say 'aren't you dizzy' - he looks at her disdainfully and says he never gets dizzy. Dad is an academic (statistics) - so there might be some denial. Parents are very much 'he is terribly bright - that's why he stabs other children with pencils - he is just not challenged'. Mum says behaviour is never problematic at home.

Thing is that a social skills group has been set up for this child - actually a Friendship Circle (why not just go the whole hog and call it a Billy-No-Mates club?). I am not opposed to this. But... this child is not statemented or on SA+ whilst DS2 is on SA+ and has external advice of the need to attend social group. I've been told - sorry we don't have an appropriate one - and the need has not even been recognised whilst another child has a group set up for them without external advise. Dad is the chair of the BOG confused

I am conflicted - I do not doubt that the child needs intervention but the parents seem to be going about this a strange way (provision of SEN resources should be prioritised by need, especially in times of austerity) and it appears to be at the cost of my child. eg he is not provided the 1:1 support he needs because the TA priotises the need of another child. (perhaps if his needs were assessed they would be considered 'severe' but they have not been assessed).

Would you do anything and if so, what?

porridgelover Sat 12-Jan-13 14:58:52

KeepOn I sympathise about being frustrated with looking for resources for your DS.
However, you lost me at the 'Billy-No-Mates club' comment.
You dont know what is going on inside this family, do you?
You dont know if they are on the same road as you, looking for a diagnosis, knocking on doors. And even if they choose to handle their DS apparent needs by burying their heads in the sand, it's not your problem is it?

I too would probably feel annoyed if my DS's needs appeared to be neglected seemingly 'in favour' of another child.
But, I hope no parents in my DS's school judge me/him for the resources I finally got for him. (Although, given that no-one there now speaks to me, I suspect many do).

What would I do? Nothing regarding this other child. I would concentrate on my own DS. If anything, the fact that the school can set up a No Mates Friendship Circle for one, gives you leverage over them to help your DS also.

mymatemax Sat 12-Jan-13 15:24:20

you must concentrate on the needs of your child alone, the needs of another child have no relevance.
If you believe your child is not being properly supported then you must fight for the correct support for your child.
The needs of the the other children and the support they may or may not be getting are linked in no way to your childs needs

lougle Sat 12-Jan-13 15:46:18

You are right to be annoyed that your DS isn't getting the provision he needs. You need to challenge that. Don't spend valuable energy on worrying about this boy. Be assertive, present your evidence.

In actual fact, this boy could have a statement, for all you know, and the Mum could be deflecting.

CwtchesAndCuddles Sat 12-Jan-13 15:50:36

How do you know the other child does not have a dx or statement of SEN, that is confidential information?
You need to put your energy into getting a dx and the right support for your child rather than resenting the help the other child is getting.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 15:59:08

porridge - not the medium to convey sarcasm - billy-no-mates is not critical - I think it was predictable that this child would have problems as a result of social needs not being met. After all he was moved from reception to class 1 aged 4 because he could not cope with the lack of structure. At the time I thought this was storing problems for the future.

The problem is that it does effect me and DS2. Mum monopolises the teacher every day at pick up time meaning that I am unable to speak to her. My child does not recieve the support he needs because the school has made an internal decision to use the TA to support another child. If this child was on SA+ or statemented their needs would not be seen to automatically 'trump' those of other children and resources would not be skewed towards them - if they required the support they would qualify for a statement. It is difficult to explain - the parents have 1:1 support normally requiring a statement because of an internal decision by the school to use the class TA as a LSA. However, it is only possible to do this provided that the other children in the class do not require TA support. DS2 does - hence the conflict.

I have spent years fighting for resources. I am trying to focus on how to make sure that DS2's needs are met - resources have nothing to do with me - I believe that both children's needs should be met, not either/or. But I also think that the principles/rules of the game/fight should be equal for all. I do not think that some parents should have to fight, to gather the data for assessment of need, to acquire external advice whilst other parents do not have to do so. I especially do not think that 'other factors' should influence whether or not the school meets the needs of a child. This issue here is not just the meeting of one childs needs over another (instead of both) but the criteria that is being used to judge whether or not to implement an intervention - ie not based on assessed need/external advice but the idiosyncratic criteria of the school.

I do not want it to be the case that to have your child's needs met it is necessary to be chair of the BOG or to volunteer to give extra maths lessons to the KS2 year 6 group.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 16:15:10

I know that this child is not on SA+ or have a statement, that a statement has not been requested etc. Or rather DH, as a member of the BOG, knows this for a fact. DS2 is on SA+, there are no children in his year with statements and only one on SA+ ie DS2. tbh I have sympathised and stepped back and allowed Mum to monopolise the teacher as I assumed her child would have a statement and I thought her need was greater than mine.

I have emailed the SALT specialist teacher with a copy of DS2's latest IEP as none of the outcomes or recommendations have been acknowledged. I am well used to banging my head against a brick wall and asking for interventions that never happen. I am hoping that they will consider it professionally offensive that they should spend 12 months and hundreds if not thousands in conducting assessments and writing reports and making recommendations and providing resources to be ignored in this way.

I really do not want to prevent another child from having their needs met. On the other hand I am really pissed off - with the school, not the child or his parents. It felt like a kick in the teeth to be refused social skills intervention but then to receive a letter requesting my consent for DS2 to miss core lessons for one afternoon each week for this term to meet the needs of another child.

CwtchesAndCuddles Sat 12-Jan-13 16:23:02

Your dh has no right to give you any information that he is privy to as a school governor! It is a serious breech of confidentiallity. I'm a school governor and fully aware of the rules.

If you feel your ds needs are not being met than talk to the SENCO and request a SA yourself if you don't have backing of the school.

Why have you been asked to consent to your son missing lessons?

zzzzz Sat 12-Jan-13 16:23:52

Rubbish.

You don't know if the child has dx, is statemented, is SA+, and its none of your business. If you need to see CT get there earlier, book an appointment or wait your turn. You don't know how TA is utilised because that is the CT's call.

The fact the other mum has successfully negotiated a "friendship circle
" can only be good if your ds has similar issues. The fact school had enough empathy to move the child from a chaotic class up to one more suited to his skill set is unusually sensible. The fact you don't like the

zzzzz Sat 12-Jan-13 16:27:16

Rubbish.

You don't know if the child has dx, is statemented, is SA+, and its none of your business. If you need to see CT get there earlier, book an appointment or wait your turn. You don't know how TA is utilised because that is the CT's call.

The fact the other mum has successfully negotiated a "friendship circle
" can only be good if your ds has similar issues. The fact school had enough empathy to move the child from a chaotic class up to one more suited to his skill set is unusually sensible. The fact you don't like the plan is unimportant since it none of your business.

I'm sorry but I think you are way off course here. I'm a bit shock tbh, and your characterisation of both boy and parents is horrid.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 16:31:00

DH has not breached confidentiality but has written letters based upon his knowledge wrt our son which I have read. He has not referred to individual children but to data. It is a small school and it is not difficult to translate the data - particularly where this relates to your child.

Believe me I have spoken to the senco. DS1 is currently unable to attend school and receiving medically authorised tuition pending tribunal and he had the same senco so we go well back.

I have been asked to consent to my son missing lessons so that he may help meet the needs of another child.

porridgelover Sat 12-Jan-13 16:43:19

KeepingOn, I apologise for taking your remark out of context; my over-sensitivity rather than your lack of it.

I sympathise again, with the frustration that seems to come across in your posts. It would seem that your DS's school are not moving to meet the needs that have been identified by you and other professionals. I imagine I would be extremely upset to have put in the work that you have done with your DS and for that to apparently be trumped by parents who have the school's ear.

But that's why I would be cautious. Regardless of your source, unless you are a school staff member, it isn't possible (nor desirable) for you to know the whole story.
Try (as hard as it is) to focus only on your DS.

CwtchesAndCuddles Sat 12-Jan-13 16:43:38

He has breech confidentiallity if he has disclosed to you information that is not in the public domaine.

If you are that unhappy with the school why not move the children to another one? If you already have a difficult relationship with the SENCO it sounds like a fresh start would be better all round?

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 16:46:13

zzzzz I would not be in the situation that I am in now and nor would DS2 if the school or the senco had an ounce of empathy - they do not. They want to improve their ofsted rating - primarily by encouraging m/c parents with high achieving DC and have said that they cannot afford any more SEN children. I cannot even begin to say how bad this school are/have become wrt SEN.

What bothers me is that this is not equal - they are not equally crap to all and they do not allocate resources based on need. In fact, to some parents they offer services that the rest of us can't access. How do I become one of those parents? Clearly not by just having a child with needs.

DS2 does not have similar issues and would not be helped by this intervention but has very different issues with non-verbal social communication.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 16:57:32

cwtchs I appreciate your opinion and your comments may have been useful - 5 years ago - no offence but now its a case of been there, done that, got the t-shirt. Back off with the confidentiality thing - everybody knows that there is only one child in the school who has a statement (official data) and who the child is (mums talk to each other confused).

ime mums with DC with SEN, especially in the same class, do not seek to hide this from each other, our DC do interventions together, we share the same problems, we set up play-dates for our DC etc.

inappropriatelyemployed Sat 12-Jan-13 17:05:58

I understand your frustration at the lack of resources for your child but I agree, your anger is misplaced.

Firstly, I agree, your husband should not be sharing any data that is not available to all other parents. It could be a data protection act issue and also a confidentiality one.

Secondly, you cannot seriously be suggesting that governors know everything that is going on on the frontline in their schools. Most of us would not have such crappy times battling the system if the heads and sencos were telling governing bodies the whole truth about their practices! It is highly doubtful that you know the whole story.

Thirdly, make an appointment or fix a time to see the teacher daily. Don't resent other parents talking to their teacher about high need children. I am always very conscious that I probably monopolise the teacher because of DS needs, but I come in very early and in the middle of the day or whenever it suits the staff.

Finally, the fact that they have such a high need pupil in the class with such a high demand for help should mean that you have a much better argument for your son to have his own TA.

inappropriatelyemployed Sat 12-Jan-13 17:06:45

Oh and move if the school is so bad. Life is too short to spend bitching about it her children.

inappropriatelyemployed Sat 12-Jan-13 17:08:05

Other children..

porridgelover Sat 12-Jan-13 17:25:01

ime mums with DC with SEN, especially in the same class, do not seek to hide this from each other, our DC do interventions together, we share the same problems, we set up play-dates for our DC etc

If I was the other mum in your school, this would not be the case.
I have kept my DS's issues private, not out of a sense of shame, but I feel the information is his. I dont want him trying to shake off a label later, if he wants to adopt it, fine, his decision.

I would be very cautious with another parent approaching me about their perception of shared issues with my DS.

I cannot even begin to say how bad this school are/have become wrt SEN.
What bothers me is that this is not equal - they are not equally crap to all and they do not allocate resources based on need

^^ It seems to me, this is the issue for you and I am sorry you have so little support from school.
Are there other schools nearby you could access for him?

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 17:29:50

IE - I feel I am being misjudged - I repeat I am angry with the school not the child or his parents. I do not feel this is misplaced.

I am angry that the school is not putting in place interventions to meet DS2's needs despite external assessment and advice that the school requested. This cannot be adequately understood unless it is known that at the same time the school is putting in place interventions to meet the needs of another child otherwise it might be assumed that the school are equally crap. They are not - they are selectively crap.

If there is to be a rationing of resources the criteria for doing so should be clear and all should be equally able to access it. I have no problem with the criteria being based upon the needs of the child whether or not they have a diagnosis or a statement. I do have a problem with schools who appear to have idiosyncratic criteria that are not based upon the needs of the child but based on who their parents are (and their ability to meet the number 1 priority of getting a better ofsted rating).

DH is not sharing information that I did not already have or is in the public domain.

School runs are hard enough as DS2 is not able to attend school atm. Maybe the other Mum could see CT early or in the middle of the day to give the rest of us who are less pushy/have another child unable to attend school and have to be home for lea tutor a chance to make contact.

I have already made the argument to the senco that DS2 needs his own LSA - by the way it was the senco who told me that the TA spends her time with this child and this has been confirmed mutiple times by comments made by DS2.

CwtchesAndCuddles Sat 12-Jan-13 17:30:20

You didn't say you knew there was only one child in the school with a statement because the data was publicly available -youir answer implied you knew because of your dh.

"I know that this child is not on SA+ or have a statement, that a statement has not been requested etc. Or rather DH, as a member of the BOG, knows this for a fact. "

I don't understand why you haven't moved your children if the school is really that bad?

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 17:42:35

porridge as DC get older ime some decide for themselves whether or not to share their issues/diagnosis - DS1 did.

I have mentioned similarites as I spent some time out of school with the parents when they had to stay with their child at DS2's birthday party. They were embarrassed and so I talked about my experiences with DS1 at birthday parties at the same age. Didn't realise compassion was a crime confused.

The decision whether or not to move him will be make in the near future, when doing so does not create further delay (ie he has a statement)

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 17:50:39

cwtches DS1 has now left the school (failed transition to secondary). He joined the school in year 4 (3rd school) as he was developing school phobia at his old school. We had no choice but this causesd delay of around an academic year as difficulties were seen to result partially from transfer.

DS2's SALT and OT assessments have only just been completed and he is still being assessed for ASD as the primary cause of SLCD. Moving him atm would create further delay and he does not want to leave.

porridgelover Sat 12-Jan-13 17:52:39

I'm out of this thread. I am not seeking an argument with anyone who also has DC with SN. It's bad enough in RL.

Would I do anything about another child receiving support from in school?
Yes, I would cheer on the parent who had got support as I bloody well know how hard and long one has to fight to get it. Good luck.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 18:08:18

I believe that the needs of both children should be met. Not either/or.

But they are not. It has been decided that DS2 will not have his needs met. He is the loser. But hey, that's OK because another child is the winner. Forgive me for not cheering. I would feel that this were just as unfair if my child had been the 'winner' and the other the 'loser'. I do not want anyone to lose support - I want DS to have it.

What more can I do?

CwtchesAndCuddles Sat 12-Jan-13 18:18:19

I'm leaving the thread too, this issue seems to be part of bigger ongoing issues with the school.

I hope you get a resolution soon.

zzzzz Sat 12-Jan-13 18:18:29

I agree if the school is so awful then move. I'm sorry I can hear the frustration in your posts but I don't see your point at all.

Why are you angry that this child is being helped?

He is on SA, because the school have taken action to address his needs. They are doing this in house presumably because they have the expertise needed. If they need outside input he will be SA+.

His parents have taken a different route than you and chosen to become very involved with school to help support him. What's wrong with that? You've already said the child's issues are very different than your sons, perhaps this is the best path for him?

I can't for the life of me imagine what the poor kids Dads profession has to do with it, let alone their class.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 18:19:11

Sorry if I have offended anyone in a similar boat to my own - I seem to have ditched sensitivity somewhere down the line (not that I ever had much).

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 18:27:58

zzzzz for the third time, I am not angry with the child or his parent but with the school.

Of course this is part of wider issues with the school. It may become necessary to move him but we are hoping to avoid this before statementing and would prefer not to do this in the run-up for tribunal for DS1. If we win but DS1 can't cope with boarding we will have to move hundreds of miles and so this will be irrelevant.

Not all parents are in a situation to become 'very involved' with the school and the needs of the child should not only be met in those circumstances.

mariammama Sat 12-Jan-13 18:33:45

It seems that there are 2 boys in one class with similar needs. One is having these met reasonably well via lots of interventions on school action, the other is on school action plus, but his interventions are minimal and needs are not being met.

The other boy, who school is helping effectively, has highly educated, well-connected parents who are reluctant to discuss or network with other SEN parents, and are possibly in denial.

Either way, it's not relevant. This school is failing your son, they can manage the other boy's apparently very similar needs without a statement, but your son may need provision specified and quantified in a statement.

mariammama Sat 12-Jan-13 18:38:13

If you were a nasty cynical person looking after budgets, you'd use the other family for a trial run of the 'amazing provision on SA/SA+' they provide... And switch it to your boy for the period before and just after tribunal hmm

mariammama Sat 12-Jan-13 18:51:15

And if I were Ms Cynicalle Budjet-Hollder, I would be working hard to avoid yet another parent getting close to statement/ tribunal readiness.

I would make darn sure that the other childs needs are reasonably well met, that their parents feel very involved with school, and that you definitely don't become their friend.

zzzzz Sat 12-Jan-13 18:54:15

I'm sorry your responses don't always get to me before I post as I have to multitask at this time of day.

No not all parents can take the hands on approach, not all disabilities are equally life limiting, not all of us have equal backgrounds or social skills. I don't think I can help but sincerely hope you manage to get the provision that your son needs.

lougle Sat 12-Jan-13 19:02:54

If the parents are refusing the help of outside agencies (we don't know that they are, but it's possible) and the support of an LSA is effective in meeting the child's needs, then they could conceivable be on SA with 1:1 support.

It seems that you see it as a case of:

Total budget £200
Child A has 1:1 £200
Child B has 0
Total Spent: £200

You feel that because the father is on the BoG, this has been done in a way that favours him and gets his child support by association.

However, if that child is causing disruption in the class, then giving him support is effective in helping all the children to learn.

Either way, it's irrelevant, because the school may spend their budget as they see fit, and while the NHS can make recommendations, they can't dictate, which of course is why we push so many parents towards applying for statements, because then the LA has the responsibility to provide what is stated.

bochead Sat 12-Jan-13 19:21:51

Life's not fair, and we aren't all equal - get over it. (favouritism exists in every walk of life, though most are far too PC to admit it). You can't change the world, only your own response to it. Life's really tough at times when your kid has SN, for the sake of your sanity focus your energies on the outcome you want for your own child and ignore everyone else.

Sadly without a statement your kid isn't entitled to diddly squat if the school don't feel like helping him. It's very, very wrong, but it's exactly why I fought tooth and nail for the legal protection a statement gives my own child. (I'm not alright Jack about it now though and try very hard to help other Mums get to the same point where I can).

Gather your evidence for a statement, (never email when a phone call will do blah, blah, blah), apply for the damn thing and just get on with it.

You still have the statementing process on your side - apply for one using the IPSEA model letter and the data you have gathered that relates to your own child. Write to the chair of the governors of your child's school asking why your child's needs are not being met. Write to Ofstead if it makes you feel better.

If you feel that the group being organised is one that would be detrimental to your own child's progress to be a part of then put it in writing, including the reasons why to the HT. get her to respond in writing as to why the school cannot meet your child's needs. I cannot see why the group shouldn't take into account the targets set for your child's communication needs.

Get in there and email asking for an appointment every 1/2 term to discuss your child's progress against his IEP. take notes and email out the minutes. Ask for a weekly update meeting with the HT if the CT is too busy to see you. Be a polite PITA - you know how wink.

or Ask for a homeschool book recording what's happening daily if the CT does not have the time to talk to you.

Read and reread mariammama's posts - her comments on the actions of Ms Cynicalle Budjet-Hollder were spot on imho.

Just read OP, but to be short, YES I absolutely WOULD do something. I would go all out to get what my child needs for my child, and let the other child's parents do what they need for their child.

If there are common interests, I might consider teaming up with the other child's parents, but only if that will really benefit my child.

The rest. I would ignore. I do not and will not compete directly and overtly for resources with other vulnerable children. It happens of course, as even securing a statement means other children lose out, but that is not my failing, it is the failing of those who have allowed these types of scenarios to arise.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 19:50:49

I've been thinking about why this pisses me off so much.

Firstly, I have been talking with the SALTs involved behind the scenes who have been providing the school with resources and reminding them of the importance of actually doing this. After all the teachers were the ones that had problems in the first place - DS2 is demand avoidant but at home is a doddle compared to DS1. At school though they have a problem with his not responding to his name, speaking and making noises inappropriately, not following instructions, fiddling, peeling wallpaper etc etc. The senco had told SALT that he was setting up a social skills group. Instead he has set up a different group.

The group that has been set up could have been designed to meet the needs of both children not just one. Given it is a small school there would seem to be zero possibility of setting up another group in the near future.

The thing that really annoyed me on a personal level was that I received the same letter as every other parent in that class. That seemed to be rubbing my face in it. I am not all-knowing and it is quite possible that I would never have found out if they had not told me.

I am not trying to personalise this. I believe that the needs of every child should be met. I may be idealistic but I believe that this should be done as fairly as possible (given unequal personal resources). I went through the front door with everyone else. I believe it is morally wrong to allow back-door access to parents who for whatever reason are very involved with the school.

I am unable to understand why after a year of assessments the advice of SALT has been ignored. No - thats not true - I am used to advice being ignored and I was OK with it when I thought it was par for the course. But now it feels more personal - as though DS2 has been singled out for crap treatment.

I am anxious about this and other needs identified in the SALT report not being met because I know only to well the potential risk and find it hard to bear possible consequences to self-esteem. I already have one DS unable to attend and I fear history repeating itself.

lougle Sat 12-Jan-13 19:59:17

They haven't gone through the back door though, have they? They are just doing their best to work out how to meet the needs of their son. They could well be absolutely blindsided by this - imagine being a Governor, or a teacher, and finding that it's your child who is hurting other children, who isn't coping, etc.

It isn't their fault that the school can see a way forward for their DS. It is the school's role to meet the needs of the children, but regardless of conflicting needs, you shouldn't be giving another child's needs headspace - it's not your concern.

lougle Sat 12-Jan-13 20:02:44

I do understand, though. Another Mum posted on FB that their child needed hearing aids and 'school has been brilliant' and 'full support because DC has lost confidence', etc.

My instant thought was 'my child has lost confidence. What support are we getting? Nada'

Then, I thought about it and came to the conclusion:

-It isn't her fault that her DC has defined needs and mine doesn't yet have hers identified
-It isn't her fault that her DC is displaying the lack of confidence outwardly, when mine is internalising it.
-It isn't the school's fault that DD2 is begging me not to take her, but once she's there, she just gets on with it.

In time, it may change, but right now, they aren't going to do anything because they can't see a problem. Not their fault, just something for me to work around.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 20:03:46

Oh fuck I have to do this again!

I wanted the school to be onside this time - it was going so well with all the school requested and therefore free SALT and OT assessments and they have called in the EP. But the resulting IEP is crap. 3.5 hours - mostly small group and whole school and bloody irrelevant provision that does not even meet the targets in his IEP. Trouble is I know from my multiple SA applications before that the lea expect more provision before they will consider SA. School will not give more provision - I gave a very moving speech (to my mind wink) about the gap between school provision and the point where the lea step in into which children fall. And then the bastard sends me a finalised IEP and says that the school have called in the EP due to parental dissatisfaction but in reality they called in the EP in October.

Right - apply for SA and get the lea to put pressure on the school to provide more and write to the BOG asking why DS2's needs are not being met. I'll copy the correspondence with SALT.

Thank you oh wise ones and boc I'll get over it smile

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 20:13:10

lougle like you say it is not my concern but I am sympathetic toward this child. I personally think that he needs more support than he is getting and that the school are out of their depth trying to meet his needs in-house. They are not blaming 'problem parents' of course but are labelling the child as naughty. I'm afraid his Mum has made several comments to me that suggests that she shares this view.

Strongecoffeeismydrug Sat 12-Jan-13 20:26:15

3 years ago DS was in a class with another child with needs like his and I'm sure his mum could have written a thread just like yours.we were both at about the same stage of the statementing route,and both boys were failing dramatically.The other boys parent was very vocal in the playground,to myself and to the senco/ht about how DS was getting full time 1-1 and her son was getting nothing.
However what she didn't know was that while her DS was compliant while not learning anything my DS was attacking any child within striking distance.
I was upset about the whole situation but I had my son to think of and I didn't see it as there being a winner or a loser just as a situation where 2 little boys were struggling but at least if DS had a support assistant at least the other 28 kids were getting some kind of education.
Fast forward 3 years DS is in a special needs school getting the help he needs ,sadly her DS is in mainstream after getting statutory assessment refused sad
She's still bitter with me but I couldn't do anything about it.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 21:10:38

I know that the disruptive child might be the child with the greater need.

I also know that access to the curriculum is considered (rightly) to be vital and that therefore disrupting the learning of 30 children gets more attention than only disrupting the learning of 1 - yourself.

DS1 was compliant but he is not in m/s - he is being tutored at home by the lea pending the outcome of tribunal for specialist placement.

Most disruptive does not always equal greatest need. Hence the need for standardised criteria of need based on professional assessment/opinion so that the school does not automatically assume that the most disruptive child has the greatest needs in terms of its provision of interventions/allocation of budget.

I suppose part of my concern is due to my experiences with DS1. This other child will not be 6 forever. 'Naughty and friendless' is not a good self identity. We all fight for a different label for our DC and as they get older we recognise their need to explain their difference to themselves.

I can't believe that any parent going through the statementing process would not be on SA+ (in fact, in my lea you cannot apply unless the child is on SA+) and would agree to a Friendship Circle. Yes, atm the other children in the class are not his friends. Why? A Friendship Circle will not meet his needs - on the contrary it assumes they don't exist. His Mum seriously does believe that he is 'naughty' because he is bright but not challenged. If he were stretched he would not be 'naughty'. I know his self-esteem and well-being are nothing to do with me but it doesn't stop me caring.

Probably DS being out of school bringing out my caring side or maybe the stress of impending tribunal. sad

mariammama Sat 12-Jan-13 21:34:07

Aha. Distraction activity. Anxious enough so you can't "not stress", but trying not to fret too much about your DS / tribunal, or you'd go mad. So this child's situation fills the gap.

PS: I may be wrong, but I got myself very tangled up worrying about a friend's situation when ds1 was being really, really hard to manage and I was preparing our first application for statutory assessment.

It was a bad situation, I still worry a bit on her behalf, but at that time most of the emotions were my own recycled ones.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 12-Jan-13 21:54:56

maria I do have personal emotions about this but they will pass. Repeat - butt out, butt out, butt out.

I have to return to writing up my PhD soon after a leave of absence - maybe this can be my 'distraction activity'. Make the most of that stress!

Thanks everyone smile

lougle Sat 12-Jan-13 22:18:32

It's hard on both sides.

When DD1 was a preschool there were two girls who needed full 1:1 - DD1 and another girl who shared the same name, ironically.

I listened politely to the INCO's views, went along with all the suggestions, watched it fail (because staff didn't understand the jargon or didn't believe that the profs knew DD1 as they did), waited until I got fed up of waiting, then told the INCO 'I don't want to tread on your toes, but I thought I'd let you know I'm not prepared to wait until you're ready to 'look at' statementing - the paperwork is in.'

The other parents listened politely to the INCO's views, went along with all the suggestions, then got issued an 'inclusion plan' for MS. Now, I have to say the other girl seems to be doing well and certainly isn't SS material. Whether she should have had a statement is another question.

I wasn't going to sit back and watch DD1 fail because the other girl wasn't having a Statutory Assessment.

wasuup3000 Sun 13-Jan-13 00:16:50

Probably the reason that the other child is getting support is because of the term "disruptive" in that this is more of a problem to the school themselves than a child who may have needs but may not be as disruptive or better behaved?
Anyway you do need to focus on your own child. I realise that you were probably just having a bit of a vent moment.

bochead Sun 13-Jan-13 00:45:42

keepingon - I didn't mean to sound quite so harsh in my response.

"Chair chuckers" do get priority for access to "interventions" BUT those interventions are all to often at geared at giving the teachers a quite life and nothing whatsoever to do with actually educating the child concerned. (It's heartbreaking to see child after child just babysat in the corridor instead of learning)

I can get a bit bitter at times over how many years of our lives we lost fighting the system to get the bleeding obvious recognised.

I nearly drove myself nuts about the sheer injustice of it all at times, and in the final analysis it doesn't help in the long run. (I'm personally convinced the term "early intervention services" would be more approporiately aimed at those due the telegram from Queenie in their current incarnation)

You WILL get it sorted out for your child - you are too stubborn not to wink I'm honking for you.

MovingOnNow Sun 13-Jan-13 08:09:03

You have to forget about this other child and concentrate on your own son. It must be very frustrating and sometimes I think it can be a case of, if your face fits, you get more co operation. My son needs lots of support. I have a friend in a similar position, not as serious, and she obsesses about who else's child is having difficulties, she doesn't want to be the only one with a 'problem' child. It makes no odds to me. Mainly, because my child probably has the greater needs of all the kids in his year. I am painfully aware of this, and while it's nice to have people to identify with, I just concentrate solely on him. If you pick up ideas from how this other boy is being supported, you can use this for ideas but I think it's a mistake to mention him. It weakens your case I think and staff will be wary of talking to you if you are (inadvertently) stirring the pot.

Handywoman Sun 13-Jan-13 08:56:35

keepon I don't have a clue what you should do but can hear the upset and despair at unmet needs and your desperation that history should not repeat itself for ypur ds2. I reckon we can all identify with it and am honk honk honking for you for the hard road ahead (and also the PhD - impressive).

Handywoman xxxxx

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sun 13-Jan-13 11:51:35

Thanks for the HONKS (my firstsmile)

DS2 is 'disruptive to the learning of other children' according to his IEP and in the mad world of SEN I thought 'Thank God'. Both children are differently disruptive, neither are 'chair chuckers' but DS2 doesn't 'attack' the other children - hence the other child has difficulty making friends - hence the friendship circle. If only things were so simple.

I guess funding is what really pisses me off. The previous head employed a ft LSA for a child with downs without requiring a statement - ie inhouse provision. This is a true display of empathy. I don't care who funds the provision just that it is made. The current head however is trying to do things on the cheap.

Whilst DS2 is becoming increasing problematic, the other child has been a problem for teachers since day 1 (they are now in class 2). The other children in the class refer to him as the 'naughtiest'. I can understand that the teachers need to do something - I would not be surprised if the parents of other children in the class had complained that their child could not access the curriculum or complained that their child was 'attacked'. Even DS2 complains about not being able to learn because of the other child 'being naughty and fighting' the other children sad. As the school can fund according to their own criteria (however injust this may feel) I had hoped that they would properly support him. This would have a knock-on effect for DS2 in terms of his accessing support and other DC in the class. I am trying to think about the future - not just the transition from KS1 and KS2 but the make-up of his particular class.

So if this child needs an LSA it seems likely that he will need to go through the assessment and statementing process because the school will not provide an LSA from its own budget under the new head to make it unneccessary. His parents seem to be actively resisting that route preferring to agree with teachers that he is 'naughty' than considering that he may have SEN. I have defended both DS when CT etc have tried to blame their behaviour on their being 'naughty' or 'lazy' or 'awkward' etc. I have seen what these comments have done to DS1, lying on the floor in a foetal position punching himself. I'm not angry with his parents but I do have to suppress the urge to grab them and say 'look at your child, you are his advocates'.

I am trying to restrict my focus to DS2 but that means that it is in my interests that the needs of other children in his class are properly supported.

Besides which it is OK to scream 'what about DS2?' without being accused of anger toward children receiving support. And I may not have used PC language in my OP but I'm with Francesca Martinez on that one ('I don't get up til midday. I asked by doctor whether it was because I had CP. He said 'no, you're just a lazy cow' ... the line between CP and laziness is very, very blurry'). Also wrt the relevance of parental profession, I agree with Temple Grandin ...

Maybe its raging against injustice rather than accepting it that makes me stubborn.smile

auntevil Sun 13-Jan-13 15:51:09

Another HONK from me Keepon

I read the first page, and the last couple of posts. It made me sad as I have a similar situation - although my DS3 s needs are not as severe as the little boy that takes all the TA's time up to the exclusion of her being able to help anyone else.
It often seems to me that either the child has to be so disruptive to learning, or the parent has to be the squeakiest wheel, and everyone else has to fight for crumbs.
It is total and utter bollocks that each child's educational needs are looked at separately, and that their needs are met.
At DS1s last school the SENco actually said that they only had the resources to deal with the 'worst' 6 or 7 and DS was just outside. I asked should I make him more disruptive so he would be in the bottom echelon. She gave me this shrug - as if saying that it might be the only way, but she couldn't verbalise it.
I bought my DS1 a writing slope several years back now. Each year I have a fight with the CT as they have 're-distributed' it. This year it apparently spends more time with a lad who has a 1-1 and has CP. FFS school - buy the lad one himself so my DS1 can have the slope that I paid for!!!!
As for DS3 - when he finally has his assessment, and we pretty much know what it will say, I have decided to go hell for leather in getting him support in class. I will turn myself into the squeakiest wheel parent.
We shouldn't have to though, but unfortunately it is the world in which we live in. Fairness has nothing to do with it. sad

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sun 13-Jan-13 16:25:21

Thanks aunt DH has also suggested that we encourage DS2 to be more disruptive confused - it is mad that we are even contemplating this. I am less [shocked] than angry that DS1's writing slope has been 're-distributed'. I had to pay for a paintbrush that DS2 broke (wilful damage of school property).

I am trying to be a stealth squeaky wheel this time around and am the flea in the ear of SALT/OT who then become the flea in the ear of the senco. I intend to move it up to thorn-in-side level by applying for SA and getting the lea involved. I still have total pain in the arse to play to get the statement right. I don't want to peak too soon. smile

Crawling Sun 13-Jan-13 19:09:22

I feel for you op I can see why you are finding it hard being a mum brings the lines out and we all want the best for our child which is hard if there needs are not being met but I think you need to forget about this child and concentrate on fighting for yours. Life isn't fair if it was none of our children would have sn.

auntevil Sun 13-Jan-13 20:13:18

LOL Keepon
We should get a list together of levels of intervention, not for our children to receive, but for us to be involved.
Flea in Ear
Squeaky Wheel
Pain in Arse
vexatious litigant being somewhere near the top!! grin

In my experience, children without advocates, get better provision (far far far from adequate, but better all the same) because it strokes the egos of the providers.

Schools can deliver on their 'working in partnership' business on their terms. They can feel good about the difference they are making to that child and they can fulfil their role of outreach.

They can't do that with us, because all they hear from us, however carefully said, is that our children are being failed by the system that they are a part of.

auntevil Sun 13-Jan-13 22:19:00

I think it's probably that children without advocates can be directed in a way that they can provide for - rather than us pushy parents giving them a fait accompli which they are unwilling don't have the training for can't provide.
When school management teams stop treating the school as a business with projected spends versus projected outcomes and remember that their responsibility is to educate all children regardless of their abilities, life for our children might get a little fairer.

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