DSS and primary school, would you complain?(5 Posts)
Just a bit of background.
DSS has just started primary school. My DP has asked that school provide him with all information they provide to DSS mum, which school have agreed too. However they failed to tell him of a meeting which took place with the teacher, DSS and his mum. DP rang about a separate issue and the head brought up the meeting and arranged one for DP so he too got the chance to meet the teacher and ask any questions. A little inconvenient that this was done last min when DPs ex knew about the meeting two months ago but anyhow.
This first week is not a normal week for DSS (few half days and the like). DP was told that it would be 10-12 for the first two days. He has today just found out (second hand from a parent, and then ringing the school to confirm) that DSS is in school 8.45-12 tomorrow. This has meant last min shuffling of arrangements to ensure that DSS is in time for school tomorrow. Timings were told to DP over the phone at the end of last term (incorrectly in this case), it appears they were given correctly in a booklet with lots of other information to DPs ex in June, he did not receive a copy of this. DPs ex does not share much information, even when asked.
My question is should/would your DP complain to the school in this circumstance? DP hasn't done as of yet (not wanting to be labelled a troublemaker so earlier on). He has had heads assurance that he will get all info such as reports, separate parents eve appointments, a copy of letters and other correspondence. However it does not seem to have happened thus far.
Not sure that this is the right place for this thread, maybe primary education would be better. But thought people here would have more experience of how schools cope with giving out two lots of information.
If the school have agreed to provide the information and as yet haven't done this then your DP should immediately talk to someone about this as it could be something quite simple that is causing the mix up. If he doesn't contact the school and challenge it then how is it ever going to get put right?
My DP has had similar issues with DSS school - the staff are not familiar with separated families (the head told DP that they had too many split families) and the expectation is that mum is the primary carer - so a shared care arrangement in which Dad is an equal parent is totally alien to them (and a situation they openly disapprove of).
DP has had to get quite assertive on occasion - repeated reminders and requests were ineffective.
His solution has to become actively involved with the school - volunteering, helping out and finally, becoming a parent governor. He had to overcome a lot of hostility and downright sexism at times - but he now has the influence to change from within rather than challenge the status quo.
DP will never be equal to DSS mum in the eyes of the school - and DSS still receives open sympathy from the staff for having separated parents and regular disruption to his life
If your DP has PR, then legally the school HAS to provide him with the same information as the RP. Also, see if the school has ParentMail, and they should be able to text and email you everything. Ask for a copy of any newsletters - find out how often they come out. Also, the school website should have a lot of the information on.
I am the RP, and had to have many a conversation with the DS's school about sending home TWO copies of the newsletter with the eldest child AND one copy with my younger DC (they normally only send ONE copy with the eldest DC) so that both my Ex's (DS1 and DS2 have different dad's, and I'm now not with either of them) and me get a copy.
I have to remind the school office at the start of every year. Because otherwise my Ex's moan at me rather than the school!
If he is worried about how he is percieved by the school he could remind them in the context of assuming it was an admin mix up rather than deliberately ignoring him, that shouldn't cause too much consternation at the school.
The idea to get involved in the school is good too - most school organisations are desparate for parents to become involved, and it will help your DP know what is going on in the school. I have found that given the quality of information that the school doles out that it all makes a lot more sense to have been present when things are being planned and discussed.
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