Aggressive troublemaker bothering my son -- and me!(9 Posts)
First time on mumsnet form, but I am at my wits' end.
My son is in year 1 (just about to turn 6) at an all boys pre-prep school in London. Happy at school, but there is ONE boy in the class who is really getting up my nose. He has some behavioural issues in my opinion. Mainly he is very into "play" fighting which is often unwanted by whomever he pounces on (usually my son) and it often ends up in more aggressive fighting. We had him over for a playdate recently and my mother in law and I between us couldn't control him, and I literally had nightmares that night.
Unfortunately his peg in the cloakroom is next to my son's and I can't get in and out of school without my son getting pounced on, put in a headlock, having a cap shoved over his face, getting pinned up against as wall, and today (when my son tried to defend an unwanted "assault") thumped in the arm twice. All the boys playfight a bit but this kid crosses the line and usually tries to blame the other person. He is also a bit naughty in other regards (cheating at party games, etc! although that's the least of my concerns!)
I finally emailed the teacher without naming names. She said she'd talked to the whole class about "playfighting" (if you can even call it that) but that very afternoon I saw the same boy provoking someone else, it got ugly and the OTHER boy got yelled at by his nanny.
After today's thumping incident, which brought my son to tears (and he's NOT a big crier), I marched back to his classroom and told the teacher what had happened. I am slightly beyond caring whether I sound like an over-protective parent or "tell tale" as I've had it up to here with this child!
What makes it awkward is that a) I seem to be the only one not being terribly diplomatic/polite/"boys will be boys"/British about it because b) this boy actually LIKES my son, which I think makes him a target for attention and c) I am or was quite friendly with his mum -- though dread it when she asks for playdates as my son doesn't like all this man handling and roughness. She is otherwise very nice, BUT she does little or nothing to discipine her child and I don't think that's going to change even if I have word with her. The child also has some great qualities and seems quite bright. Personally I think he needs counselling or something!
How far should I press the school to intervene? Should I talk to another parent in confidence? I'm sick of dealing with this nightmare every time I drop my son off or pick him up and we cross paths with this kid.
No play dates, make excuses or tell the other mum what's happening if she pushes. She needs to know.
Yes press this with the school, they need to intervene on this and sharpish but if the teacher doesn't see all the events and no one brings it to their attention they won't realise what is happening. Become a broken record until it is sorted. You don't have to label the child, just be as calm as possible and give the facts as to what is happening.
Don't talk to another parent, go through the school.
Hopefully it will be resolved soon for everyone's sake but especially your sons.
Good advice, thanks. It is hard to gauge whether I'm over-reacting and don't want to come across as some kind of hysterical psycho mum. But normally I'm pretty laid back and never complain about anything school-related, so I believe this is a real issue. My son is much less upset than I am. But I don't need to be pulling another boy off him at 8:30 in the morning or at the end of a long day. My son went to nursery at a local not particularly popular state school primary and I never saw anything like this rugby scrum mentality and all the politeness and not wanting to offend around, frankly, quite bad behaviour. The kids there were probably better behaved and the parents stricter! I have read a bit of this site, and these issues seems to arise everywhere but I am actually starting to question choice of school based on this one bad apple!
Give the school a chance to take action before final judgement, they may not be aware of the full extent of what's happening. As the kids are young hopefully some swift intervention will solve the problem. It could be the child is over-enthusiastic and hasn't learned enough about appropriate behaviour with friends. He may think he's just playing and not realise he's upsetting/hurting the other kids.
The teacher should be your first point of contact and with any luck it'll get resolved or at least addressed very quickly. Don't hesitate to keep telling the teacher if it keeps happening.
And you haven't mentioned it at all to his parents? Even when he behaved like that at your house?
Just tell her.
You need to keep it all factual and report every single incident to the teacher:
In the cloakroom today boy A pounced on DS and held him in a headlock, this is not acceptable, what are you going to do about it?
For the parents if they suggest a playdate:
No thank you. Boy A was very rough with DS yesterday in the playground and until he calms down DS doesn't want to play with him.
Don't start extrapolating about the school itself (until you've given them a chance to sort things, at least!), the parents or whether or not the boy needs counselling and don't gossip. Just point it out, every time.
I don't think your overreacting in a way because it would piss me off to.
Some of what you say/how you say makes me feel a little like you take it too much to heart but that could just be how I read it.
If this was me, from what you've said, I'd need to talk to the mum. Seeing as you talk to the other mum sometimes it could be difficult but I'm sure she'd rather speak to you than the teacher about it. She'll probably be a bit embarrassed but take it better from you.
For your son
You need to go to the head teacher, you have spoken to the teacher about this twice and had wishy washy answers. The school should have a anti bully policy which should be on the school website ask for copies.
As for the mother you need be honest that until her son can behave himself and not hurt your son, then you will not be having any play dates.
I had this with my son in reception but lucky for me the teachers were very helpful in keeping the other boy away from my son. This other child is not nasty he just has no boundaries or consequences for his behaviour. We had on afternoon after school, 3 parents, spoke to the mother about her child behaviour (thumping 2 girls and 1 boy, trying to ram his scooter into them and then given the mother back chat) and her answer was "What was she supposed to do, parent her child"
Clutterbugsmum -- yes there is a distinct lack of concern from his mum who is often in full view of the offending behaviour, chatting away doing nothing. That's the most troubling part. School IS generally helpful (and otherwise great, so it's a shame this has happened) I will keep on at them if it's not resolved. We only have a few weeks left of term and in January there's a parents evening so I can bring it up again then if necessary.
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