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If this was YOUR child's school would YOU move them.

(70 Posts)
FlowerySkull Mon 28-Mar-16 13:28:08

Have N/C Firstly this is long, some of it will seem petty, some of it less so. I want to state everything as I want a genuine opinion on all facts.

I have a dd in secondary school and we have been having some issues. I have posted about some of these before so please bear with me.

Firstly she has learning difficulties, she is also very quiet.

Recently she was a victim of a serious incident which involved being threatened with a weapon, schools communication of this incident was awful, I made a formal complaint and have now been told that the year head will not discuss issues about dd with me anymore. I want to add that I have sent three emails in the last year to the year head (as is the proper channel even for minor issues or things or messages for the form teacher) so I am not a parent who is always pestering them.

Other issues. They identified her for mentoring as she was not meeting her potential. I became aware that all the other children who were doing mentoring had already started. DD wasn't. I chased it up, they said they had been busy and had not had chance to do it and would. I then received a letter stating dd had done so well on the mentoring course that she had been taken off it. However they had never started it.

I am consistently being told issues which relate to her sen at parents evenings only to find out the teacher does not know she has sen. This has happened on several occasions now despite reassurances it won't.

When dd was going abroad on a school trip they had promised her (as an sen student) that they organised sessions every year for children who needed more support to get to know others, especially those who were going alone without friends. (all dds friends dropped out after Charlie Hebdo attack) but dd at that time still wanted to go. They also promised they would make sure that she had at least one person she at least knew in her hotel room. They didn't.

While away she contacted me in a state, one of the boys who is a child regularly in trouble in school had started to target her, he got a whole bunch of his friends to target dd, They totally ruined her trip. DD is admittedly oversensitive anyway but he accused dd of biting him because she had stick out teeth and got lots of his cronies to taunt her. DD had reported this to the teachers in charge and they had done nothing initially. This happened three more times. Eventually I text them and they said dd was lying as she had said it had happened again on the coach and they said it had not and had been sorted already. (I later found out off another child this was not true) they eventually moved dd away from the only people she knew away from the boy but then let him sit behind her and taunt her again when they next stopped. The name calling continued for around 8 weeks in school although her form teacher did then deal with it.

When dd started back at school at the start of a new year she was lambasted in front of her class. She had moved up a set in English. The rules in her previous set had been you must always find out your reading levels from the library staff and pick a book within those levels to read. So if your level is 4.2 - 6.4 you must pick a book between that.The second rule was you must ALWAYS have a library book in class. DD had done this and had actually picked the lower end of the levels but not realising the new set teacher insisted they start off at the bottom of the level 4.2. Instead of explaining to dd she shouted at her in front of the whole class 'I don't know why YOU have picked that book for, when you are getting 100 percent on tests then you can choose (dd incidentally did get 100% on the next test) DD was heartbroken.

Sorry I said it was long! DD does not want to go back and I am reluctant to move her as the other options are not fantastic but feel entirely frustrated with them.

BillSykesDog Mon 28-Mar-16 13:36:21

I would remove her for the weapon incident alone.

AlwaysDancing1234 Mon 28-Mar-16 13:38:27

So sorry you and your DD have had to go through this.
Sounds like the school have behaved appallingly and in the circumstances I'd move your DD as soon as possible. Or would Home Ed be a possibility in the short term? I know school moves aren't easy, especially when you throw SEN in to the mix but I think where you move to couldn't possibly be any worse!

ilovevegcrisps Mon 28-Mar-16 13:40:21

Yes, absolutely I would.

NeedACleverNN Mon 28-Mar-16 13:40:57

On that information yes I would move her. As long she is happy to be moved

WombatStewForTea Mon 28-Mar-16 13:44:42

Why wouldn't you move her?!

Nanny0gg Mon 28-Mar-16 13:45:08

Move her.

With a very detailed letter explaining why, to the HT, the CoG and the LA. (and possible Ofsted - their safeguarding appears non-existent)

ARV1981 Mon 28-Mar-16 13:49:28

I would move her if you can.

I was bullied all through school and the affect it has on my self esteem is still with me at 34! I think I would have done better in a "worse" school without the bullying than I did in the supposedly "better" school with it, iyswim? Kids learn better when they are allowed to learn without constant worrying if some bully-boy shit head is going to call them names or physically harm them.

The fact that this school is refusing to engage with you is extremely worrying shock your dd, the kids in her class and even the bully ringleader deserve better than they are getting.

The English teacher sounds contrary too - why stifle a child's desire to read and love books because they pick something that's a little harder than they "should". It doesn't make any sense!

AgathaMystery Mon 28-Mar-16 13:55:58

Today 13:45 Nanny0gg
Move her.

With a very detailed letter explaining why, to the HT, the CoG and the LA. (and possible Ofsted - their safeguarding appears non-existent)


FlowerySkull Mon 28-Mar-16 14:05:31

With regards to the book issue dd was having sessions for low self esteem at the time and felt the teacher had thought she was too stupid to read it. It was this book so hardly taxing sad dds reading age which has always been at least two years ahead (official assessment related to sen tests) and the only academic thing she has ever been very good at is now approx.10 months behind because dd is being forced to read books from a certain level and there is a very small selection of no interest to her so now she will not read for pleasure as she is being forced to read books she hates.

FlowerySkull Mon 28-Mar-16 14:07:59

LA won't work as it is an academy. I have already spoken to them. Apparently I have to do a three step complaint through the school and governors and then go to the Dfe?

NeedsAsockamnesty Mon 28-Mar-16 14:18:36

Yes I would.

And I would have done it instantly as a result of the email from them refusing to discuss the child.

DisappointedOne Mon 28-Mar-16 14:21:07

Get her out of there. Don't send her back after Easter if there's any way you can keep her home. They're killing her slowly.

letthefundusbegin Mon 28-Mar-16 14:29:04

You've said she is 'sen', does she have a EHCP or old style statement? Pretty sure this makes certain requirements of the school which are statutory whether they are an academy or not, and the LA can intervene in this case as they have a duty of care for pupils with statement/EHCP due to the local offer- google this for your own Local Authority as they should have a webpage dedicated to the 'Local Offer'.

In any case, I would move her if she wants this, but I would go and meet with the SENCo of any potential future school with a copy of your DDs statement/EHCP so you can outline what your expectations for her education are (ie mentoring, additional support to help her catch up etc.) and see what they say. You may well find that they are happy to help and accommodating provided that they are aware of her individual needs from the outset. Best of luck for your DD as her treatment so far sounds horrible.

SideOrderofChip Mon 28-Mar-16 14:29:26

Get her moved.

You have enough grounds to move her on each incident individually. All together that school is massively failing her

FlowerySkull Mon 28-Mar-16 14:37:57

No she was on school action plus and iep until moving to secondary. She has made academic progress so seems to have been removed from these.
She has diagnosed sen conditions.

FlowerySkull Mon 28-Mar-16 14:40:53

I have got an appointment with senco at two other schools. Problem is all the other local options with spaces are in special measures or awful academic results (14%)

Gatehouse77 Mon 28-Mar-16 14:45:45

I'd move her. You appear to have taken all the right steps that these incidents should not have occurred. Even if you allow for teething problems the school response has been appalling.

letthefundusbegin Mon 28-Mar-16 14:48:57

Ok it's a bit of a shame she hasn't got an EHCP or statement as this gives you a bit more power when arguing the case with schools. That said, if she has diagnosed conditions they I would also imagine that she is covered under the Equality Act (2010). I guess this is besides the point as you've no doubt been into her current school and tried to sort the various issues failings out many times already.

I know that on paper academic results for other schools may look poor, but this doesn't necessarily account for pastoral care or how much the school do to support children. Is there any way you can move her school but get some kind of tutoring or support outside of school hours to ensure that she doesn't fall behind academically. I personally wouldn't go for home schooling at secondary level as the curriculum is complicated and entering for secondary qualifications as an individual candidate is really expensive.

Just one more thought, you mention that she has friends at her current school are these friends enough to make it bearable for her to stay at the current school (hideous school trips aside) or would she still be able to see these friends in time outside of school if she transfers to a new school?

Sallyhasleftthebuilding Mon 28-Mar-16 14:57:52

Some schools aren't the right "fit"

First look up the schools complaints procedure - it states your rights and action they take - worth a read - quote it in emails

A school in special measures - could be for all sorts of reasons - look on the websites and ask questions -

Some schools are more caring DD moved from outstanding school - to a good school with better care - she's a lot happier and still achieves above her potential -

Write to your MP - keep to the facts - it's why they are paid

I feel for your DD - buts some schools are more inclusive - don't shout at the kids - for example if you were reading a magazine - easy read - you wouldn't expect to be shouted at would you?

Move her - better happy

TeacupsandFigs Mon 28-Mar-16 14:58:53

I'd be moving her to a new school.

FlowerySkull Mon 28-Mar-16 15:00:40

She doesn't have many friends and she could see them out of school.

Lurkedforever1 Mon 28-Mar-16 15:04:57

I would move her too.

letthefundusbegin Mon 28-Mar-16 15:05:25

Floweryskull It sounds like you know what the answer is, and you're absolutely doing the right thing in meeting with both potential schools etc in order to pick where to go next. Good luck and I hope your DD is much happier soon!

MiscellaneousAssortment Mon 28-Mar-16 15:06:09

I'd move her.

That's from a mum and a child's perspective- the child being me,

I was bullied unmercilessly throughout secondary school, and although I didn't think it then, I have come to the conclusion that there comes a point when adults become complicit in allowing the bullying to continue, and certainly the bullies are quick to realise when their actions have the tacit support of the school. Only you and DD know when that point has been reached, but it sounds pretty damn close, poor sweetheart.

I would move her, but also complain through all official channels at the same time as you're finding another place. Makes my blood boil to know that these teachers can behave in such an irresponsible and cruel way with no come back at all. Why on earth are these people unaccountable for their actions, in a world where nearly all professions are held responsible? Bastards.

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