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10yo DS name-called and stuff broken - what to do?

(4 Posts)
inmysparetime Wed 21-Sep-11 10:02:17

I looked in DSs bag to get letters out, and found his new plastic water bottle had the lid smashed off it. A biro pen was also smashed in the bottom of the bag. I found another smashed biro last week.
I asked DS about it and he said someone must have moved his bag, then he burst into tears and told me children in his class kick footballs at him and call him a midget, among other names. He says he tells the teacher, but she does nothing to stop it.
I asked him to bring a notebook to school, and when things like that happen, to write the date, what happened and who was involved, so if he needs to tell anyone he can do it when he's not worked up about it.
Am I doing the right thing? Is it normal for Y5 boys to smash each others stuff up? Should I keep replacing pens and water bottles or go to school myself and talk to teachers?

joruth Wed 21-Sep-11 14:09:16

Bullying is common...but never normal and never ok...if your son is so upset then it's definitely bullying not just playful high jinx...they will know that it upsets him from his reaction and should stop...they haven't.

Your school will have an anti bullying policy ( whether they are good at putting it into practise or not) .

I would go to the teacher and then to the head straight away and tell them what is happening. They can make a plan whether they tackle the bullying in a general way first (there are some good resources schools use to talk about acceptable behaviour and kindness etc.) or if they have to tackle particular boys individually.

Tell your son he is always right to report bullying behaviour even if the outcome isn't what he wants, and that he must tell you any time...the conspiracy of silence is the bully's weapon. Your son has been brave to tell you...tell him so or he will feel like a wimp for "telling tales".

If his teacher is not prepared to take action then I would write a formal letter of complaint to the head ( but give them a couple of weeks to act first!). but be aware that he may have not been very coherent when he told the teacher and she may not have realised quite what was involved.

perhaps a metal water bottle???? and a tin pen case??

bubby64 Wed 21-Sep-11 14:39:37

My DS1 was bullied last year at school due to his weight (has medical condition which contributes to this) he also spoke to his teachers, and the playground staff, who all said "Just stay away from them" This was really no answer at all, as staying away from the kids bullying him would also have meant staying away from all his friends and his brother, who also hang around in that group. They were essentially saying "go stand on your own over there and sort yourself out"!
I sorted it out in the end by first going to the class teacher, and, after a couple of weeks when things only improved a little, I went to the head teacher. He got the whole class together and spoke generally about bullying, and why it was not acceptable, and then spoke to each child in turn and in confidence. This approach seems to have worked so well that now, as the top year in the school, he and his class mates have been made "play leaders", and are asked to be on the look out for bullying in the rest of the school, and are helping stop it happening to other children.
Perhaps you can suggest this approach to the head teacher if you get no where with his class teacher?

mightymouth Wed 21-Sep-11 15:42:24

sorry to hear your son is so upset by this bullying. General rough play is very common in school among boys, who do hurl bags around a lot. So I agree with the sugggestion of a tougher water bottle and a tin pencil case. But if your child has his things damaged again, take a pic with your phone and keep the evidence. Schools often only act when you can show what happened, so keep a diary of what is going on and report it. Ask them to tell you what they are doing about it and when they will get back to you.
The school should do work with the whole class and they should be working this term towards Anti-Bullying week so it is a good time to start now. Schools that are members of the BIG Award scheme would have lots of assemblies, lesson plans and other resources to use.

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