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Advice required please desperately for Monday morning..

(50 Posts)
Mothernature Sat 05-Mar-05 19:22:15

Got home on Friday evenig to be informed by ds1 that he has been 'red lined', this is similar to an exclusion, he came with a letter from the teacher involved who has informed us we are to attend @ 8.15am Monday. The letter states has has been invloved in a 'serious incident' what on earth is it?...

Well the story goes as follows: Ds has been doing his mocks all week and has a time table to follow, which he has been doing, anyway one of the exams were changed and therefore regular school timetable was then inforced, problem being last lesson was P.E, ds had no kit, he was informed by teacher to wear spare kit, ds refused to do so, and knowing the state of the P.E kits in the spare box I would have refused to do so under hygiene conditions, and this is the 'serious incident' that has occured.

We feel this has been blown out of proportion, ds informed the teacher he would prefer a detention or lines, ds has not been in trouble before at school, he works hard at school has a partime job, most of his friends are a year above him at school, these include headgirl and prefects, myself and dh are fuming, dh starts work at 6am, he has the car but is almost an hour away from school, I have considered going myself but want to have support from dh, if he does not go to work by 8am he is not allowed to enter, 'work rules' we have also considered sending a letter into school informing the teacher that this time is not suitable and we will attend in afternoon when dh has finished work to resolve the matter, I need your imput and support as to what to do, anyone out there that can help?

HunkerMunker Sat 05-Mar-05 19:24:03

Oh how bloody horrible for you all - sounds like they've gone totally mental at the school.

Can you ring the school office first thing and explain about the time of the meeting not being appropriate - it does sound like they're not being very flexible. Are they usually good to deal with?

coppertop Sat 05-Mar-05 19:24:31

They probably chose 8.15am thinking that you started work at 9am. Definitely ask for this to be changed.

It sounds very harsh IMHO.

jabberwocky Sat 05-Mar-05 19:25:07

Good heavens! It does sound like it's been blown totally out of proportion. I don't have any experience so hate to give advice.

soapbox Sat 05-Mar-05 19:29:25

Mothernature - I think what the school need to remember is that your DS may be a pupil there but you and Dh are not. As such they are in no position to summon you to the school like some naughty children.

If the matter was urgent they should have contacted you on Friday and arranged an appropriate time.

If your DS's version is true then this does semm very heavy handed.

I would send a note in with DS telling them to call you to arrange a time for a meeting that is convenient to you and the head teacher.

throckenholt Sat 05-Mar-05 19:37:28

definitely say you are unable to attend at that time with such short notice (most parents would have the same problem) - but definitely try and rearrange and take the chance to talk to the teacher - it does sound like it has got out of proportion.

Mothernature Sat 05-Mar-05 19:41:14

From what I can gather being 'red lined' is like being excluded, I'm not sure they will let him into school Monday morning with out one of us turning up aswell, I am worried as I said he is going through his exams at the moment, makes me so , and 'I could so kick some butt....' but I am one of those persons who sits and nods and when everything is over whish I has said such and such....give me strength...the school is usually very good, we both went there, dh was Headboy fgs...what do they do this for, I do belive what my son has told me and I have considered both sides..I'm cross..

LittleRedRidingHood Sat 05-Mar-05 19:47:43

Im not surprised you are cross MN this is a ridiculous situation IMO - I could understand it more if your ds was often a pain - but as he is clearly a good 'lad' it seems silly to be so harsh - No sensible advice though - as my kids havent even started school yet!!!!!
{{{{{{{{}}}}}}}} for Monday

Mud Sat 05-Mar-05 19:56:42

I would phone the school and demand a more appropriate time and that they allow DS to attend until you have spoken. How dare they, they should have contacted you on Friday by phone not just deal by letter.

I am sure your DS is lovely but it does sound remarkable that a school would take such action with a pupil with such a good record, especially whilst he's in the middle of his exams, are you sure that he maybe was not a little bit too cheeky in his refusal? I am not doubting him, just find it amazing that this action could be taken

Whizzz Sat 05-Mar-05 19:58:57

Agree with others. I would ring first thing if the time they have chosen is not convenient for you both. Sounds a bit OTT though for what has happened.

Mothernature Sat 05-Mar-05 20:03:23

His refusal to put on the pe kit was serious enough for the teacher to record this incident, staining his record, as it was considered a blatent act of difience [sp?] fgs its a smelly unwashed pe kit full of god knows what, we have standards..but to red line him is no excuse in my own opinion. I know of others that have got away with a lot more than a refusal...I think he [ds] must have been the last straw iykwim

jampots Sat 05-Mar-05 20:11:19

Agree it sounds like its completely blown out of proportion. PE kits by their very nature arent nice IMO and i dont blame your ds for not wearing a spare especially after changing hte timetable without notice.

Mud Sat 05-Mar-05 20:13:54

but was it the fact that he refused or was it the way he refused?

and how old is he by the way?

WideWebWitch Sat 05-Mar-05 20:15:05

It sounds completely out of proportion to the 'incident', it really does. It's also very autocratic to summon you like this at incredibly short notice for something that doesn't sound serious to me. I think you should call or write first thing on Mon saying that you are unable to make this appt at such short notice but that you can do x y or z time on whatever day you can do. I agree, you should both go if they are taking it so seriously.

Mothernature Sat 05-Mar-05 20:17:59

Unsure on the 'way he refused' but I know he would not have been 'awful', he is 15 and doing his mock gcse's

WideWebWitch Sat 05-Mar-05 20:18:41

Is the head reasonable? Is he/she going to be there as well as the teacher? Let us know how it goes. Poor you, I'd be cross too but try to say calm on Monday won't you? Only because it will get more achieved and I say this because I am guilty of not staying calm enough sometimes. Also, try not to let it ruin the rest of your weekend although I know this is easier said than done.

Mothernature Sat 05-Mar-05 20:24:13

I don't think the head will be there, but It will seem as though I am calm as I'm sure I wont be able to say anything anyway, its the same school I went to with most of the same teachers, my knees will be knocking far too loudly for me to think, I'm afraid we came from a time when you were scared of your teachers and when you did as they said, not answering back, all this has now changed but I am still scared of them...I know what I want to say and I know what I will wish I'd have said when its over..but I want to put the words in my head to say to them when we do have the meeting, dh will loose a days pay if he goes to the meeting at that time, I am definately not going on my own...

janthepan Sat 05-Mar-05 20:36:58

Hi there, I've just had a chat about this with my dh who has been a teacher at a secondary school for 12yrs. He said that it's difficult to comment not knowing the full circumstances (typical chap! and teacher!) but he did agree that for the school to act like that over what seems a very minor problem does seem a bit extreme - and as somebody else said, they have no right to summon you in with very little notice, really less than 24hrs working hrs. I hope it goes OK for you, I hate going and talking to teachers, they can be so awfully pompous at times. Good luck.

champs Sat 05-Mar-05 22:43:11

what a nightmare! and agree with soapbox sumoning you how rude. I also think you should call in morn and tell them time isn't appropriateand that you expect ds to sit his exams on mon. i also feel you should tell them you want the entry in the records removed as it is very unfair to tarnish his good record for this.
for one thing it was the schools fault that the timetable was changed and if ds didn't know this was to be the case then of course he wouldn't have kit. it seems weird that the normal timetable was enforced as i would have thought they would have had a study period.
for another thing the kit he was offered was no doubt scummy!!

Mothernature Sat 05-Mar-05 23:11:31

So you think I would be within my rights to call and say timing not suitable as they did not give us enough notice for meeting? although Friday to Monday sounds a long time it wasn't 24 hours working notice, we had no chance of calling dh works to arrange time off, would they be allowed to send him home again if we didn't go with him in the morning even though we call?

milward Sat 05-Mar-05 23:19:00

Did the school give proper notice that pe kit was required - doesn't sound like it. Why should your ds have to wear unclean clothes because you didn't have a chance to sort the pe kit. Also to tell you to be at school at 8.15 on a monday. Completely out of order. Send your ds to school with a letter to the head teacher asking them for a full apology to your ds & you. Your ds has done nothing wrong he stoodd up to bullying from his teacher. The teacher has the power here but doesn't mean they are right. Involve as many people as possible - his class teacher, his subject teachers, the board of governers. Let them know they've picked on the wrong person this time.

hercules Sat 05-Mar-05 23:20:06

I would wait to find out the schools version.

Mothernature Sat 05-Mar-05 23:20:17

I wish I was that

tigermoth Sun 06-Mar-05 07:17:03

I think you have to brave it and go in alone on Monday morning.

In normal circumstances, I'd agree that you should not answer this short notice summons, and instead phone the school and arrange a more convenient time.

However, you say your son might not be allowed back into school until after the meeting AND he is in the middle of taking his mock GCSEs.

Do you feel OK about him missing his mocks? That may be a reasonable option - I don't know. But if it's important that he takes these exams, I think you have to sort this out at 8.15 am for your son's sake.

Is there anyone else you can take with you, if your dh can't attend? If not, from what you've said, you've got lots to positive about - your son is a generally a good lad, this seems like a one off incident, blown out of proportion.

Remember you have a whole day to think through what you want to say, and you could take in notes to the meeting. You can use mumsnet to talk things through before you go, you know you'll get support here. YOU CAN DO IT!!

bathmummy Sun 06-Mar-05 08:00:42

In order to prepare yourself, I would try and look at it from the school’s perspective too. They probably have a fixed rule that any child refusing to participate in a lesson with no good reason (in this case no kit but alternative kit supplied is not a good reason in their eyes) then they will treat it as serious, usually expecting parental involvement.
Whilst your son is a hard wokring boy and I am sure that you believe and trust him, you weren’t there at this incident so are getting only one half of the picture. Even the nicest of boys, under stress or feeling defensive, can step well beyond the mark and act out of character/very rude/a smart artse. I am not suggesting your son did this, but I would advise you to at least consider the possibility of there being a chance that he didn’t say something like "please excuse me from PE today, I have forgotten my kit and do not wish to wear the spares as I am concerned about the cleanliness..." Especially if his mates were there, he more than likely just plain refused and offering to do lines or detention instead could well have just irritated the teacher thinking he was trying to be funny or smart rather than genuinely looking at other options.
As you may have guessed I am a teacher and reading this just makes me think that there must be more to it.
Please don’t let him miss his mock exams, they are so important and will play a huge role in helping him prepare your his real exams. I would go in, listen carefully first to everything they say, ask DS to give them his version of the incident and take it from there. You are not going to be judged, they will have asked you in to help stress the seriousness (rightly or wrongly) of this incident to your son rather than just being hauled to see the head of PE on his own. You are also being asked in to inform and keep you in the picture, to involve you in deciding how to resolve this, not to make you squirm or feel defensive. Forget that you were a pupil there, you are now an adult and your child is in trouble. Think of your role as twofold - not just to back up your son regardless as you are his mum and need to protect him, but also there because you want to work with the school in your son’s best interests. It is not you and your lad versus the school. If you walk in all defensive thinking that they are the bad guys and your son is totally innocent, you will achieve little and your son will not come out better for it.
I know it is daunting and worrying, but I bet that with a calm head and without going in all guns blazing it will be resolved quickly and easily.
As for the time, I know it is early and little warning but many schools find that parents are more able to visit the school at this time before most work starts rather than able to take time off during the average working day and arrive at 3.45pm. The short notice is unfortunate but it is always better to deal with these type of things immediately while it is fresh in everyone’s minds and before the next PE lesson.
As for PE kits, whilst your son’s school could be the exception, there are now fairly tight rules and regs. in place regarding kit. Long gone are the days of festering kits covered in mud and sweat for the spare kits. They have to be washed after every use, normally by the person who last wore it, and the PE staff check it over before accepting it back. They will not be too happy if you try to use the concept of dirty spare kit as a valid excuse - it would annoy me if someone tried to sue that as a reasonable argument for refusing to take part in a lesson.
I am on your "side" - not trying to suggest your son must be a thug and that he needs punishing, just trying to put a different slant on it as so many fo these posts slam the school without any of us reall having the full facts. Good Luck.

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