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Dinner lady suspended for telling 7-year-old's parents about her bullying ordeal ...

(35 Posts)
MummyDragon Mon 06-Jul-09 12:52:12

Has anyone else seen this story?

Granted, the dinner lady probably was in breach of some rule or other, but who, in her position, would not have told the mother exactly what had happened to her poor daughter?

The world's gone mad. I really hope that the boys who tied up the girl and whipped her with skipping ropes are dealt with appropriately. Not quite sure what would be appropriate in these circumstances though hmm

SouthernMeerkat Mon 06-Jul-09 13:01:09

I read that this morning (admittedly in Metro so not in any depth) and felt that there HAD to be more to it than was being reported.

And if there isn't, then yes, the world has gone mad. As the mother I would have wanted the school to give me the full story, not the edited, don't-sue-us version.

duchesse Mon 06-Jul-09 13:14:25

Sometimes I think this whole fucking country is mad. If course she did right. The school should have been a whole lot more forthcoming about what had happened to the child. It makes you wonder what else are they covering up? Many schools in this country have core gangs of little thugs whose teachers, head teachers and parents are unwilling to tackle their behaviour proactively, and prefer instead to blame the victims. I know too many people whose children were victimised by pupils and, either by default or actively, by staff as well, for this to be a one-off in my mind. These boys will almost certainly be doing things of this ilk regularly, and are never properly dealt with.

limonchik Mon 06-Jul-09 13:21:47

Depends - if she told the mother "this is what happened to your child" then fine. If she told the mother "Tommy and Billy did this to your child" then I think that would have been very inappropriate and unprofessional and a breach of confidentiality.

GooseyLoosey Mon 06-Jul-09 13:23:32

I admit that in the circumstances it sounds like what she did was the right thing, but... Schools havea policy that you do not discuss what happens in school out of it and you certainly do not discuss the children. This is largely to protect the children from inappropriate gossiping. I have to say that this is a good idea and it is one of those rules which to work has to be applied in a blanket way - you cannot have exceptions which are justified by what an individual thinks is right otherwise there is no force to the rule at all.

LadyRaRa Mon 06-Jul-09 13:24:37

agree
half a story there
the dinner lady was out of order to name the children.

MummyDragon Mon 06-Jul-09 13:29:46

In the Times story it doesn't say that the dinner lady named the alleged bullies - is that what actually happened then? (Of course she shouldn't have mentioned names).

But still ...!!!! (DH is a teacher; I know there can't be exceptions to a rule ... but still...!!!)

LadyRaRa Mon 06-Jul-09 13:31:18

she should have kept her nose out.
it was not in her area of responsibility.
if she felt the head should have sone something differently she should have told the head.

PeachyTheRiverParrettHarlot Mon 06-Jul-09 13:31:34

She shouldn't have named them, but as a aprent i'dwant to know

It was only after an employee at school broke the rules and tipped me off that ds3 was spending classtime each day intears that I had the ammunition to get his SNU place. And only when aprents complain to me that ds1 has hurt their child that I can try and get support for him (theya re both ASD) in his MS setting. But it'snever school that gives the info, and that limits us both as parents of victim and bully

duchesse Mon 06-Jul-09 13:35:43

If she is a dinner lady, she may very well also be a lunchtime supervisor, therefore very much her area of responsibility.

Simples Mon 06-Jul-09 13:36:25

even so
channels and all

stickybun Mon 06-Jul-09 14:08:29

Simples - What mean you by 'channels & all'. Surely this is about child protection at it's most basic level? Sounds to me as tho the head is only concerned with not damaging image of school. I read the Times version and apparantly the note from Head said 'I'm sure your child will tell you all about it'. this is one thing that victims of bullying often do not do; surely she would know that. As for names of children not being mentioned in an ideal world maybe not made public. As a parent I'd want to know - I find it hard to believe that children of that age wouldn't know that it was wrong to treat someone in that way. That surely is the most important thing - that the little girl is enabled to emerge from this without feeling too victimy and that bods who did this are sorted out and put on right path. Moral equivalence of bully and victim is no good thing imo. No wish to demonise anyone but bullying is wrong and a bad thing to do. End of.

Callisto Mon 06-Jul-09 14:18:38

Blimey - I'm so on the side of the dinner lady. Sod channels and procedures, if that had happened to my daughter I would want to know all about it. I think the father is absolutly in the right to involve the police. Duchesse is also right - this is such a serious incident there have undoubtedly been other nasty things happening to this girl.

flossie64 Mon 06-Jul-09 14:20:50

I work in a school doing midday supervision and the childrens welfare is very much part of our job .
It would be almost impossible not to tell a parent if they asked what had happened ,when the school has not given a full account.
I wouldn't approach to tell a parent , but as a carer , I would probably ask if they were ok , really expecting that they were fully informed of the incident. The school is failing in its duty of care for that child if all available details are not given to the parent/guardian of the child.

moffat Mon 06-Jul-09 14:22:52

I can't believe the dinner lady was suspended - and i don't see it as a confidentiality issue either, it was not a secret what the boys had done.

ihavenosecrets Mon 06-Jul-09 14:26:57

I disagree LadyRaRa. A few years ago my 10 year old niece was being badly bullied at school, the school assured my sil that the issue had been resolved. My niece retreated into her shell and wouldn't tell her parents anything, the school still insisted there was no problem. One of the dinner ladies at the school turned up at my db and sil's home and told them that my niece was being very badly bullied. My db and sil are forever grateful for the dinner ladies actions and my niece is thriving at her new school.

staffylover Mon 06-Jul-09 18:47:52

limonchik/LadyRaRa Feck off! Have some compassion and put yourself in the childs parents postion. Nip bullying in the bud by naming the bullies! It seems another liberal idea to protect the guilty and the dinner lady did the right thing and the school should hang their heads in shame.

edam Mon 06-Jul-09 19:05:07

Headmistress Debbie Crabb should be ashamed of herself - any disciplinary action should be against her for lying to the parents (lying by omission is still a lie).

Sounds like this attack has been VERY badly handled and she's trying to distract everyone by blaming the whistleblower. The parents have every right to hear from a witness and the witness has a clear duty to tell the truth.

Not only has Ms Crabb misled the parents, she's now insisting her staff do the same or face suspension. Appalling.

edam Mon 06-Jul-09 19:07:43

And what message does this send to staff at the school and children?

Staff - keep your gobs shut even when a child is harmed, don't even think about telling the parents.

Children - staff will be suspended if they dare to tell anyone what nasty little bullies get up to.

3littlefrogs Mon 06-Jul-09 19:14:00

Some schools, and head teachers are so pathetic and dishonest about bullying, I would say the dinnerlady did the right thing. It is perfectly possible the HT was trying to brush it all under the carpet.

Frasersmum123 Tue 07-Jul-09 08:03:09

I think the school suspended her because she has made them look stupid as they hadnt told the parents the full story.

nickschick Tue 07-Jul-09 08:13:04

This isnt unusual...

A dinner lady at my sons school asked me to ask her what had happened to my ds at lunch.

Now as far as I knew the head had called me in because my ds and a particular little shit had had a row and ds had been scratched quite badly on the face with said boys nail- this child was then banned from the next days trip(rather harsh I thought).

so I asked the dinner lady.....

My ds sad was scratched ,yes,but with a sharpened pencil point that the boy had hidden in his hand and gouged down his face angry.

But at least he'd had a cold compress.

In my mind and experience some schools just do what suits them sad.

fishie Tue 07-Jul-09 08:45:42

but they do have to suspend her no matter what her reasons. you just can't have a member of staff going around talking outside school. and being interviewed by the colchester gazette!

but it does raise questions...

do schools have whistleblower policies?

is it customary for the parents of the victim of bullies to attend meetings with the parents of the bullies?

Upwind Tue 07-Jul-09 09:09:46

“She had eight knots around her wrists and had been whipped across the legs with a skipping rope"

and her parents were not told! Bravo to the dinner lady.

sarah293 Tue 07-Jul-09 09:10:18

Message withdrawn

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