To be annoyed and want to get to the bottom of this?(18 Posts)
10yo DS went on a school trip today. He is disabled but attends mainstream with full support and his 1:1 was with him all day.. except in the toilets!
I was handed his comfort toy at pick up time and told it had fallen in the toilet and would need a wash.
On the way home, i asked DS about it jokingly and he told me that another child had dropped it in the toilet... so i probed a little more (it can be difficult, his memory isn't great) and eventually he told me he was in the toilet cubicle, when this other boy barged in just as he finished, took the toy off him and threw it down the toilet!
Now, obviously i am aware his version of events might be incorrect, but there is a bit of history of boys in his class using the toilets as a place to bully him, and now DS is saying he never wants to go on another school trip again. (which i'm also angry about, getting him to go on trips is a feat in itself!)
I will ask about it politely on monday to get the TA's version of events, but as she wasn't in there, i'm not sure she'll be able to answer properly.
If DS's version is true, what should i do?
So sorry to hear that happened to your DS
I would report to / discuss with ta and or class teacher. Does the school also have an emotional wellbeing / literacy type person, can't remember the proper term sorry - but the anti bullying / wellbeing lead? I would hand a word with them as well. This sounds really out of order and terribly upsetting for your DS. I hope you get it sorted.
Even if ta wasn't in immediate vicinity they should be looking out for examples of bullying behaviour and other warning signals. If they are aware they can hopefully monitor better in future.
Did you ask him where the 1:1 was when it happened? He or she should at least have been by the door. There should also have been questions asked by staff about how the toy 'fell' in the toilet.
Hope he's ok!
It depends on your son's needs.
Where I work, a mainstream school, a TA cannot and will not go into the children's toilets on their own, ever. If a child does need toileted, then there will be at least two TAs with them and they will use a disabled toilet
At ten years old, unless your son has toileting needs associated with his disability, then under no circumstances should an adult be in the toilets with him.
I have known people to lose their jobs over this to be honest. If the toilets are becoming a trouble spot for your son, then that is something that you need to discuss with the SENCO etc, so alternative strategies /provision can be found if necessary, but the TA was right not to be in the toilets with him.
I don't know where she was, i assume outside or supervising the girls.. his teacher is male so he might have been in there with them all, but all DS can tell me is that a 3rd child told his 1:1 that this boy had thrown the toy in the toilet.
What he cant tell me is if anything was said to the boy about it, and i suppose his TA didn't want to tell me right then and there as it was quite late, but she is really good about me coming to her about things.. she will know DS will have told me.... what parent isn't going to ask how something ended up down the loo?
Bad, he doesn't have toileting issues, his TA usually takes him to the bathroom and then waits for him in the corridor, but this was not in school and was a public building they were visiting, so it would have been a managed 'toilet' trip where all the children are taken as a group.
all DS can tell me is that a 3rd child told his 1:1 that this boy had thrown the toy in the toilet.
Then that is out of order in my opinion and you should NOT have been told that the toy simply fell.
I doubt the teacher would have been in with them either. I can only speak from my own experiences, but as members of staff it's more than our lives are worth to go into the toilets with the children. If a child needs toileted they are taken in to the disabled toilets with two members of staff at least, ideally three- two in the toilet and one to stand outside the door
Ask the TA what happened on Monday. School trips are usually a mad rush back as it is
i agree, but i prefer to speak to them first.. DS's version might not be true. i'm not a parent to go in all guns blazing until i have all the facts.. then i will deal with it.
it was more a query of what i should do about it if that is what happened?
Obviously i will speak to them and let them know i'm not happy and i expect the other child to be dealt with, but what's a reasonable request?
Definitely speak to them to find out their version
If toilets are somewhere your DS regular has issues (not toileting itself) they need to work with you to help prevent future issues, such as DS to use disabled toilet with ta waiting outside. Obviously any bullying should be addressed but school toilets are a problem area exactly because they are difficult to police.
Sorry, didn't mean to imply at all that it's your DS's fault! Of course it isn't.
It's a difficult one, and I've been in similar situations as a TA/SEN support. I wouldn't go into the bathroom with 10 year old boys. Most would want to use urinals and that isn't appropriate for me to be in there.
If the TA normally supervises DS whilst he's in the bathroom at school I would've expected her to hand him over to the male teacher to supervise. Unfortunately I've been in that situation and sometimes the teacher doesn't realise how much supervision they actually need, so just leave them to it and accidents happen.
Unless your DS needs his toy on him 24/7 I would make a point of he doesn't take it into the toilets. I wouldn't let a child take any toy into the toilet full stop. If he's able enough to toilet himself and function in a mainstream school etc I'm sure he can understand have a quick wee, wash your hand then you can have it back. I'd of tried to insist that toys were put in my bag anyway to prevent them getting lost.
badnaughty that is not good practice and it doesn't preserve children's dignity. 3 people accompanying a child using the toilet? Sounds like your school needs updating on care plans etc.
Initially I was going to say it was worth raising with the SENCO in case there are ongoing issues when he goes to the toilet. It all depends on your relationships with both TA and SENCO though. School trips can be draining for staff but if the child that did this is allowed to get away with it then it's likely they will do it again, so it is definitely something you should query. Make sure you say you are worried about future issues rather than overly criticising what happened on the trip. For example once you have the TA version it's best not to focus on what they should have done, accept what happened and use it as an example for how this should be dealt with long term. Your child should not have to use a separate toilet, other children need to be taught appropriate behaviour and given clear instructions on the consequences of bad behaviour.
Also 1:1 support should not be used for supervising the girls. The TA can't do a 1:1 job properly if they are expected to be 'general' staff. Your child has been given 1:1 for a reason and the school should not abuse this
If your DS needs accompanied to the toilet for safety he should be taken to the disabled toilet or two members of staff should be in the toilets with the children (with all children using cubicles).
No single member of staff would, or should, have gone in with them. That's just leaving her/him self open to all sorts of potential accusations.
If the toilets is where the other children have bullied your son before then it's pretty lax of the staff allowing him to be in the toilets with them with no supervison. In your shoes I'd certainly be asking questions.
If he has a witness to what happened (as it seems there is) then I'm sure the school will take this seriously especially with a history of toilet-related bullying.
Speak to the school on Monday and report what has happened.
Hopefully you will then be able to reassure your son that this is being dealt with and will not happen again. If they can't ban the other child from trips then at least the teachers can make sure he isn't alone with your son in the loos again.
Poor lad, I hope he's okay
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