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To override DS's dad?

(18 Posts)
MonkeysToesAreTickly Fri 30-Sep-11 20:11:09

DS's father and I separated a few years ago. DS's father was main carer (as he was studying part time while looking after DS, I worked full time). We decided to split custody 50/50 and DS attended a school local to his dad.

Fast forward a few years, and I live in a completely different area. I also have main custody of DS and ex now works full time, the split is more 70/30 in my favour.

The AIBU is this, DS currently attends a catholic school in a bad area. DS is catholic, though neither his father or myself attend church. DS was sent to the local catholic school as it was the best school in the area. However, as he has resided with myself for the last couple of years I applied to our local authority for schooling. We live in a wonderful area and the schools here are much sought after.

I applied for three catholic schools and two normal schools (which both have outstanding Oftsed reports). The LA have offered us a place in one of the none catholic schools. I want to take it, DS's dad doesn't, because it's not catholic. FWIW, Ex is catholic but doesn't attend church or take up any form of religious practice.

Currently I have to drive 30 minutes away to get DS to a (poor performing) school. When I didn't have transport due to no car, it took me two hours on a bus.

I am intending on DS moving schools next week, Ex is furious and believes he should stay where he is. We are normally quite amicable but he has told me this would end our friendship if I move DS against his wishes, he has also told me he refuses to discuss this with me any further as he has made his decision.

So who is being unreasonable? (probably both of us).

slavetofilofax Fri 30-Sep-11 20:14:39

What does your ds want to do? Is it primary or secondary?

ZillionChocolate Fri 30-Sep-11 20:15:44

Maybe ask if he's willing to contribute towards private tuition and transport costs? Or would you be willing to make sure that DS can attend church regularly? Those are the only ways of compromising that I can see.

How old is DS? How does he/would he feel about this? What about his current friends?

MonkeysToesAreTickly Fri 30-Sep-11 20:17:56

Zillions - I promised Ex that because I was removing DS from faith school, that I would contact my local catholic church and make him attend every week - especially as DS is due to have his Holy Communion this year.

DS is 8 and is moving primary schools.

LilQueenie Fri 30-Sep-11 20:19:39

If your ex is not the one doing the school run everyday and doesnt have anything to do with his religion other than being named a catholic then he is BU. Why does your ex think the current school is best?

FabbyChic Fri 30-Sep-11 20:19:48

Firstly I would move my child to a better school, secondly one nearer to someone who can collect him if he is sick is better, however moving a child when the school year has started is pants, kids have already made friends he will be the outsider, bit of poor timing there.

I'd get the Ofsted reports and tell him that the school he attends under achieves and is not good for future prospects, if it is a secondary school I'd be looking at a school that has access to a good sixth form college or has a good six form attached.

FabbyChic Fri 30-Sep-11 20:20:43

OMG Holy Communion when neither of his parents actually follows their faith, you knot it's bollocks don't you that people do that. So hypocritical.

LilQueenie Fri 30-Sep-11 20:21:27

If your ex is so sure he wants your son to attend church should he not do the same to set an example? Cant see why he would his son to do something he doesnt see fit to do himself.

Maryz Fri 30-Sep-11 20:23:26

The thing is that first Communion is a huge thing in Catholic schools, and you may find it is much more difficult to organise if you move him now. Would you consider waiting a year (until after first communion), and maybe discussing this further, rather than just making a decision and carrying it out against your ex's wishes.

I also suspect that your ex realises that the custody split is more 70/30 now, and fears that if you move him to a school near you he will see even less of him.

So there may be more to this than simply Catholic/non-Catholic school.

You have to decide whether this is worth a huge row, or whether a slower, more discussed move might be better long term rather than you both digging your heels in.

MonkeysToesAreTickly Fri 30-Sep-11 20:24:48

FabbyChic - his name is has been on the LAs list for nine months - it's not my fault they offered a place after the term had started, I had contacted them a lot before the end of the last school year to try and prevent this from happening now.

Ex's family are all Catholic (as are all of mine) so Ex believes he should has his Holy Communion. I'm not too fussed, but I know DS would like this too, as we have discussed it. This is why I am trying to compromise by offering weekly Church visits etc.

thederkinsdame Fri 30-Sep-11 20:33:22

But you can still organise a first communion without going to Catholic school. My friend's kid is leaving before his to go to a non-catholic school, but continuing with all the stuff he needs to do to take communion, so I'd speak to the (new) school and priest at old school see if they can help you come to some sort of compromise.

Vallhala Fri 30-Sep-11 20:34:00

AFAICS you're completely in the right. He's being ridiculous, ignore him.

exoticfruits Fri 30-Sep-11 20:49:44

What about DS -what does he want to do? Does he want a first communion? Has he not pointed out the hypocrisy of doing something that his parents don't do? Has his father seen all the schools?

pranma Fri 30-Sep-11 21:05:35

First Communion is a really big event for Catholic children my step dc and dgc are RC and it is huge.My guess is that your ds may want to make his Communion with his classmates and your ex may well be more open to a move after this.

pranma Fri 30-Sep-11 21:13:17

fwiw my dh who is a very devout RC says that your ex isnt much of a Catholic if he doesnt go to Church.He also says that he would always put the quality of education before the 'faith' element of a school and it is up to your ex to provide a religious foundation through his own attendance at Mass with his ds.

HeadfirstForHocusPocus Fri 30-Sep-11 22:27:26

If his dad is so bothered about the catholic side of things he should be taking him to church every Sunday instead of leaving it all to a catholic school!

The quality of the education is far more important and he can have both anyway!

skybluepearl Fri 30-Sep-11 23:05:37

you are right, move schools. will give you both a better quality of life with less commuting. ex can alsways take son to church.

skybluepearl Fri 30-Sep-11 23:06:10

is this more of a control issue on his part rather than a religious one?

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