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to not like my nephew (who I'm looking after) to be this close to a teacher?

(46 Posts)
Nephew Tue 05-Apr-16 11:19:55

I don't think I'm knocking the teacher? But then again, I don't know if he is too personally involved with my nephew.

I have name changed, for my nephew's sake, there's a lot of information I have shared on my other account, but I have never mentioned him.

I'm going to write (DN = nephew)... DN is 12, coming on 13 (Yr 8). He has had to move in with us, for a bit, while SIL is in hospital having a serious operation and a long recovery process.

He has some end of year tests coming up soon, they're not extremely important (like GCSEs) but he wants to do well. He is hitting target in every subject, but French. His French TA has been letting him come back at break and lunch, for 1-1 sessions. He's been enjoying that and has really got better with his writing. DN is now taking part in the athletics thing at the end of the year, he has began training now, this is at lunch times.

French TA has offered to walk with him from the lesson - changing room (on a Thursday, when he has a French lesson just before lunch). I asked DN what this would be helping and he said that its for the speaking test... I'm really struggling to believe how helpful a little stroll to the changing rooms could be? I decided to have a quick call with his teacher, to let him know that the TA really doesn't need to bother with the 2 minute walk session. His teacher said that he wasn't aware of that, but he'll sort things out.

DN uses his school email address to forward revision exercises to this TA, since the last week - I've thought nothing of it. I decided to keep a watchful eye and the conversations really derail to talking about the weekend, how's he getting on here, etc.

I don't like it at all. I don't think it's anything untoward, but I think she's definitely too involved, or AIBU?

DonkeyOaty Tue 05-Apr-16 11:26:30

I don't know. The walking to training is okay, maybe he's a bit anxious about the new set up.

Emails, not so keen on the probing.

On balance YANBU.

Clawdy Tue 05-Apr-16 11:30:12

Do you mean the teacher or the TA is too involved? It's not clear from your post.

Nephew Tue 05-Apr-16 11:32:49

The TA, the teacher isn't involved with this, only when I called him

Misswrite89 Tue 05-Apr-16 11:36:18

I don't think it's appropriate for a TA to be emailing your son asking personal questions but perhaps I'm just wary of over friendly TAs - blame Happy Valley.

goldenlilliesdaffodillies Tue 05-Apr-16 11:36:47

I'm a teacher- that all sounds slightly dodgy and like it could be grooming (especially the bit about walking to the changing rooms). The TA should not be e-mailing your DN about personal things. Forward them on to the teacher (or print out).

miraclebabyplease Tue 05-Apr-16 11:39:16

I'm a teacher too and this is ringing alarm bells. I would have concerns if my TA did this.

catewood21 Tue 05-Apr-16 11:44:01

How old is the ta? I think out school sometimes employ foreign 6th formers as language assistants .they come to improve their English and live In the boarding house on a quid pro quo basis. They are only kids of 16 or 17. If this is the case I wouldn't worry but if he is an adult then yes sounds like grooming

Nephew Tue 05-Apr-16 11:46:15

Oh, I'm not sure what his age is, but he definitely is an adult.

NotGonnaAnswerThePhone Tue 05-Apr-16 11:52:16

I would monitor the emails without mentioning anything for now.

ScarlettDarling Tue 05-Apr-16 11:54:33

Is the TA male or female? In your first post you say she's too involved and in your last post you say he is definitely an adult. Not that it makes much of a difference, I just like to have all the facts right!

The walking with him to the changing rooms wouldn't bother me. It's could be that it's on her way to the staffroom anyway so they just walk together and chat. The emails shouldn't really be personal. I guess it depends how personal? Are they mainly work based with a quick 'have a lovely weekend' at the end? That would be fine but if you feel they are over familiar and you aren't comfortable, then you definitely need to chase this up.

Hope you get things worked out soon.

Nephew Tue 05-Apr-16 11:56:09

Sorry, that was definitely a typo. The TA is a he.

They talk about what he'll be up to at the weekend, etc.

At first, I thought he was emailing a classmate!

WinnieTheW0rm Tue 05-Apr-16 11:58:52

Are the email conversations in French or English?

Nephew Tue 05-Apr-16 12:01:14


ILikeUranus Tue 05-Apr-16 12:04:13

Putting those things together I'd be a bit uncomfortable too. You did the right thing bringing it to the teacher's attention, you might not be the only parent/carer with concerns.

acasualobserver Tue 05-Apr-16 12:09:14

Decidedly odd. (I am a retired teacher.)

Footle Tue 05-Apr-16 12:17:57

It doesn't sound right. But does DN have access to any proper counselling through school, or somewhere else ? Maybe this shows that he could do with an extra, non-family, person to talk things through with him ?

samG76 Tue 05-Apr-16 12:28:54

I'd hesitate to call it grooming without knowing the full facts - if he's going through the stage of wanting a role model then this TA is probably a better person than most, but I agree it's worth seeing whether there have been any other concerns expressed.

ValancyJane Tue 05-Apr-16 12:41:43

Is he an SEN student? If not I would say it's a bit odd. But if so it puts a different spin on things.

RTKangaMummy Tue 05-Apr-16 12:42:11

Does TA go into changing rooms or leave DN at the door?

But deffo odd imho and the emails should be printed off and given to teacher asap

If they were in French that would kind of make a bit of sense but in English no sense at all

ValancyJane Tue 05-Apr-16 12:44:45

That said, the emails sound a bit much - exchanges about work with a 'have a fun weekend, hope the rugby match goes well' or something like that I would say is fine. Informal and detailed discussion about weekend plans is not okay in my opinion.

RTKangaMummy Tue 05-Apr-16 12:45:06

Also it is very important that the 1:1 time is in a room in public view, as in a classroom with a corridor that is used very frequently and the door MUST be left wide open with them sitting so they can both be seen from the doorway

Wishfulmakeupping Tue 05-Apr-16 12:45:11

This doesn't sit right with me id contact the school again

OneMagnumisneverenough Tue 05-Apr-16 12:52:43

Are school staff actually allowed to be mailing directly with a student in any case?

I know with Scouts (of a similar age to OP's DN) for example, all emails between leaders and participants go through a parent. For DofE (older than DN)via school all communication is via a FB page and group chat. Any issued emails are copied into parents.

I think much of this is set up for the protection of the adults as well as the children. If nothing else, this TA is putting herself in a vulnerable position by engaging in private non-school communication I would have thought.

I would guess it is probably completely innocent but the fact it could be construed otherwise means it's inappropriate.

goldenlilliesdaffodillies Tue 05-Apr-16 12:55:48

Safeguarding is a really hot topic in schools at the moment. Every term my school does training and updates on it. The TA and Teacher would also be up to date on this. They would know it is unacceptable to send personal e-mails and go near changing rooms with a student on their own. It puts themselves at risk as well as the student. I would follow this up, particularly if our gut instinct is telling you something isn't right.

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