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If you moved your child's school due to bullying, at what point did you say enough is enough?

(33 Posts)
yerbabird Wed 25-Sep-13 21:53:35

DS1 in YR6 has been isolated and ostracized by his year group, gradually since YR1, we have a situation where this year it has escalated to him being name-called, locked in loos, excluded from games and teased (hat being thrown about). We picked up on it as being overt when one of the boys at the centre 'dogged up' my son and his dad after school last Thursday. Cocky to say the least. DP set up the meeting with the head straight away.

Very good head teacher, apologised in our hour-long meeting on Monday that the signs had been there but the individual teachers had not collectively realised the extent. Head teacher spoke to DS on Friday and Monday, and held back after assembly all the boys involved. By now we have a pack mentality going, and it was 11 or 12 boys from his class. They were all told it stops, dead in its tracks, otherwise it's behaviour plans and their parents are involved.

Ok so now nothing over, and yes it is early days, but not really when you know how long this isolation has taken to reach this point. I chatted with my son tonight and although there is nothing 'happening' what DS is experiencing now is quote 'you know mum when your eyes meet someone elses by accident and you know you are not welcome, and you don't feel liked'. He just feels like it is still there, just gone to a different form, subtle. Looking into the future, it does not seem like this will soften.

There is a school 1 mile away, my son has friends there, and is desperate for a new start.

With my thanks, may I ask what have others experienced of moving schools to avoid bullying?

Ikeameatballs Wed 25-Sep-13 21:56:38

I haven't experienced this but my gut instinct would be to change cools if I could.

What is likely to happen at secondary?

TheHouseCleaner Wed 25-Sep-13 22:05:09

My child has been there and it was hell for both of us. You really have my utmost sympathy.

To answer your question as to when, quite simply?
Too late.

A friend of mine is a vet and she oddly enough was the one to put it into words, using the example of a pet owner having to decide when a terminally ill pet who was never going to get better but which was slowly declining should be kindly put to sleep. She said that deciding to move a child who's being bullied is like that pet, that it's far kinder to make the decision a week too early than a day too late.

If you've tried but your son's still insecure, if your gut is saying move I would with all my heart say do it sooner rather than wait and do it when it's too late and your son is damaged long term by the bullying.

mydadsdaughter Wed 25-Sep-13 22:05:23

I'm sorry to hear about your DS bein
g treated this way, my heart says to change schools, I think that's what I would do, if you did change schools would he meet these boys again at secondary school ?

yerbabird Wed 25-Sep-13 22:08:04

Hi, thanks Ikeameatballs (those clever Swedes), we plan to move out of the area by then. Looking to head south somewhere more 'us' all round (ie Taunton smile).

This village has a reputation locally for being small minded, although it fills 3 classes a year. 2 years until both DS's go up, this idea of going to the next village is survival for DS until then.

yerbabird Wed 25-Sep-13 22:13:54

thank you THC and MDD, your answers from your hearts - what better place. Yes too early is better. Bless my DS, the school say he has been so strong and articulate and has not retaliated (he's a tall strong boy).

Yes he would meet them at secondary should we still be here, it is the vast majority of his year group, a couple of boys at the centre, persistence in and out of school and here we are.

lljkk Wed 25-Sep-13 22:36:45

Move him NOW. Speaking as someone who was bullied and had problems with DS. Pack mentality does not change, ime.
You always realise way too late.

yerbabird Wed 25-Sep-13 22:53:20

Thank you lljkk. It is so helpful to be understood x

lljkk Wed 25-Sep-13 22:59:16

Just do it, my only regret is not moving DS sooner.

BrianTheMole Wed 25-Sep-13 23:02:17

Move him if you can. Is there space?

AGnu Wed 25-Sep-13 23:06:31

I'd be moving him, personally. I had low-level bullying from the age of about 9. It never went away. My parents never saw it as enough of a problem to move me - I just needed to toughen up apparently. It's so hurtful & demoralising to be excluded like that on a day-to-day basis. I still have issues now. I'm 27 & my default assumption is that everyone I meet won't like me once they've been around me for more than 5 minutes. I have some wonderful people in my life who are slowly changing that opinion.... But I still wonder why they're being so nice & at what point are they going to humiliate me. hmm I'm planning to home school in the hope that I can avoid my children being in that position!

I hope you can decide what's best for your son. Maybe ask him what he'd like to do, it's him who's got to go to whichever school he's taken to!

yerbabird Thu 26-Sep-13 12:38:56

Thank you all. AGnu so sorry to hear that this has followed you, I'm 42 and can really relate to you, and I have hope you will heal yourself in the time ahead.

Lljkk, the move sorted things? How is your DS?

Good news the school in question has 4 places (this is a rural area, not enough kids about, its a funky school with a farm on site), I have completed the In-term admissions application.

I have an appointment to see the head and DS's Learning Mentor on Monday again. I want their support in requesting the transfer. My DP is unsure, we are also looking to move house, but my instinct is the now, like here and now, experience for DS must change asap, regardless of our speed of house move.

DP said but he'll be going into classes with established friendships, he'll feel isolated. it seems a lesser evil.

My DS's take on it this morning was he was 73% sure he'd like a fresh start. Love him. I said keep it to yourself and I'll find out about spaces.

Thank you for your replies x

Labro Thu 26-Sep-13 18:01:05

Its always difficult. Ds has moved twice. Once at end of yr 1, as ds was assaulted by a child who had 'nowhere else to go' then at the end of yr 4 when one of the teachers stood by when an older and much bigger child was apparently 'playing a game' which involved trying to stamp on my ds head because the child said he wanted to squash my sons brain on around 5 different occassions.
Moving isn't always easy, even now my ds has found it quite hard to settle and get through the established groups, but its worth reminding yourself that if the school hasn't managed to solve the problem then they aren't going to and you have to make a best interest decision for your ds.

bunjies Thu 26-Sep-13 18:09:36

Yes move him now. He needs to know you're on his side & will do this for him. Don't let him suffer any more.

3littlefrogs Thu 26-Sep-13 18:13:20

When my son tried to kill himself.

Don't let it get that far. The only person who will help your child is you. IME.

Please don't hesitate. Move your son now.

Badvoc Thu 26-Sep-13 18:15:09

Very good experience for us.

KittiesInsane Thu 26-Sep-13 18:17:33

Go sooner rather than later.
DS found his diary and creative writing book last night from year 7. He said it was like reading about a different boy stuck in a nightmare place.

He still physically shakes if he has to go into the school where it happened, and he's year 11 now.

Shift him before he starts assuming it's his fault he's being picked on.

KittiesInsane Thu 26-Sep-13 18:19:41

About the established friendships: the bonus of being the new boy is that you are more interesting than Maths at least for the first week, so people come and talk to you.

DS (Wimpy Kid personified, at 12) said it also helped that there was a rumour he'd been expelled from the previous school for beating people up.

KittiesInsane Thu 26-Sep-13 18:21:47

IMpress on his current head and teachers not to bring up the possible move while you are deciding. DS's head dropped him right in it by shouting 'So is that right that you're moving to X school DS? Why?' in front of his classmates.

TheRealHousewifeOfSomewhere Thu 26-Sep-13 18:23:09

I would be inclined to move him. Will the other school feed into a different secondary school? What happens at the start of year 7 would also concern me.

Sparklingbrook Thu 26-Sep-13 18:25:07

We moved DS1 after 8 months when he was in Year 8. Best thing we did for him. he is a totally different child now.

GreenGiant3 Thu 26-Sep-13 18:28:45

I was bullied and got moved schools, in secondary, my first year. I found it very unbearable, I was always crying and depressed, I begged and begged parents to let me move schools, and they did, not soon enough, but I was moved. It was so much better, fresh start etc

Do it OP, I really feel for your DS, bullying is horrible confusedsad

SparkleSoiree Thu 26-Sep-13 18:30:04

I moved my DS after 18 months in his new secondary quite a number of years ago. The final straw after much phsyical and emotional abuse toward him was having his head repeatedly banged against an outside wall at school by the usual group of lads and the head teacher telling us he was bringing it about himself. They constantly refused to accept that bullying was the problem.

I wish I had moved him the first time he asked me to and not waited at all.

Go with your gut instinct and don't worry about other's opinions, kids remember their school days for all their life.

Sparklingbrook Thu 26-Sep-13 18:31:34

I think DS's school thought he was being too sensitive. They said 'sometimes you have to let life be the teacher'. sad

KittiesInsane Thu 26-Sep-13 18:32:32

'the head teacher telling us he was bringing it about himself'

Oh god yes.

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