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Really, REALLY annoyed with school

(13 Posts)
Jennyb851 Fri 02-Apr-04 19:27:45

Very, very long rant im afraid. ds was premature and was diagnosed with asthma when he was about 5 months old. hes 6 now and since he started school he has had a lot of time off. He also has a problem with coordination, is very clumsy and has had a few bad bumps at school resulting in him being sent home. Usually it was due to hospitalisation after asthma attacks, hospital appointments, reoccuring tonsilitus and all the coughs and colds that children have. The school havent helped as they have become paranoid about his health and now send him home if he sneezes, coughs or has a bit of a runny nose (which were probably a lot to do with his tonsils). I know he has had lots of time off and its affected his work but he has always been a very sickly child. His asthma has calmed down over the years and now hes had his tonsils out so we were hoping that things would improve but ive had a letter from the school today stating that although they know he has all these health problems, his poor attendance is unacceptable! I have blown my stack to everyone who would listen. Am i surposed to send him to school with a nebuliser strapped to his face and a drip in his hand? They have also gone behind my back and taken the matter up with education welfare. Is it me?!!!

Jimjams Fri 02-Apr-04 19:50:19

They sound bang out of order. Do you know what his % attendance has been? If I was you I would ring the EWO yourself- ask them if the attendance is unacceptable - if it is then ask that the LEA provides a home tutoring service (that'll get them backtracking as that costs them money!). When he was in hospital did he see the hospital schools service?
Also keep a note now of every day he missses school with a reason just to protect yoursefl

Freckle Fri 02-Apr-04 20:01:04

Also, do they count the days they send him home as absence? In which case they are contributing to it themselves and really don't have a leg to stand on.

Hulababy Fri 02-Apr-04 20:05:30

Seems out of order to me too. I gather they are doing it it to cover their own backs - maybe an OFSTED looming? Or the LEA questioning them?

Just make sure that you keep copies of every letter you send in for absence, and make sure you cover every day's absence with a note. This means that they are all authorised. If possible try and get a doctor's note to back the illness up too. Keep a reord of dates and times of absence, with reasons and also if it was you or the school who deemed him too ill for school. This all then covers you.

Hope it all pans out okay.

Jennyb851 Fri 02-Apr-04 20:07:34

I dont doubt that his attendance is bad, something like 45% i think. The point i think the school are missing is that his time off has been for genuine reasons. Its like they think im using his illness as an excuse because i cant be bothered to take him! well i work full time (with exception to right now on maternity leave) so why would i keep him off school if there was nothing wrong with him? Then i wouldnt be able to go to work! They could have at least called me in for a meeting but then i surpose i couldnt have told them any more than they already know-the child has been ill.

Jennyb851 Fri 02-Apr-04 20:09:52

soz, posts crossed there. im getting onto his doctor, my childminder and my work. They all have records that should match. I shouldnt have to do this-its disgusting. Im being made to feel like a criminal and a bad mum.

WideWebWitch Fri 02-Apr-04 20:19:42

Agree with Jimjams and I'd be cross too. I'm a bit sick of all these "attendance was xx% last week, well done to class afg who had the best attendance" in our newsletter. These stats are meaningless unless you explain them. If 10% were off were 9% of those sick? Or skiving or what? Because if they were all sick, so what? A certain percentage of all schools/offices etc are going to be off at any one time! Meaningless and stupid stats in a lot of cases imo and something which schools are far too preoccupied with. This sounds a typically stupid example, agree, contact EWO yourself and ask them what they'd like you to do.

misdee Fri 02-Apr-04 20:28:18

oh no!
dd1 has bad asthma and has had a lot of time off in the last 2 terms of nursery. we have had about 5 hospital appointments, she has only attended a full week around once a month. this week she was off till weds as she has had tonsilitus, i have had to pick her up early as she has had small attacks at nursery and is struggling to breath and gets upset. do i have all this to come?

hmb Fri 02-Apr-04 20:33:01

I'm surprised that they do this sort of thing. The school I work in only follows up unauthorised absences, on in extreme cases if a child always missed, say Fridays, or something like that (not say that this is the case with your ds at all). I'd have a work with the form tutor.

Jennyb851 Fri 02-Apr-04 21:42:02

i really hope you havent got all this to come misdee. Its not just the asthma you see, its related things like the cough that is caused by the asthma and the constant runny nose and all that to do with his tonsils. They dont seem to consider this. ive often said if he farted a bit too loud they'd send him home. i do feel that instead of trying to understand his problems theyre labelling us as troublemakers and that is so unfair. Hes been through so much only to get it thrown back in his face. Ive been b****y fuming all day. as youve all said i think i should have a word with his teacher and EWO. It makes me feel like moving him to another school but im not going to upset him like that.

MeanBean Fri 02-Apr-04 23:17:37

If I were you, I wouldn't have a word with his teacher, I would put my response to their letter in writing. In other words, a reasoned, calm, firm letter stating the reasons for his absences, reminding them of the numerous times they have sent him home, in situations where you would have been happy for him to stay at school, pointing out that you work full time and that it has sometimes been deleterious to your work when their ill-judged sending homes have resulted in your enforced absence from work, and as JimJams says, asking for a home tutoring service as naturally, you would not want his education to be "unacceptable" in any way, shape or form. Then you can smile sweetly whenever you see them, and harass them in your most concerned, pushy mother voice to know how he is getting on, and if he is functioning at an "acceptable" level, until they are sick of the sight of you and your bloody concern. I think you'll find that this is the best F*** Off you can send to them, and will result in them getting off your back and staying off it.
Bloody a***holes.

jampot Fri 02-Apr-04 23:27:07

Last year when ds was in year 1 they had a new teacher to the school who basically didn't do any reading with the kids, mums (and dads) were going in on a weekly basis to complain about lack of reading, lack of books being sent home, etc then when parents evening came in one subject (may have been "topic" there was only 1 page written on. All the kids suffered as a result and my friend whose son has CF was told the reason her child was behind was because of his poor attendance!!! He has to be admitted to hospital for 3 weeks at a time for iv's and is tutored at hospital. Doesn't explain the rest of the class though!!!

robinw Sat 03-Apr-04 07:59:23

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