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I don't know what to do for the best. :(

(13 Posts)
DevotionAndDesire Thu 15-Sep-11 12:12:47

My son started school last week, but I have issues with his school.

First they didn't tell me about the open day or parents evening that they had, so i never had chance to meet the teachers and was not given the information pack until two days before he started, when i went into the school to complain talk to them, at which point i was told by the rude receptionist that everyone was 'too busy what with it being the day before the school reopened'.

Since then i have just felt more and more uncomfortable with leaving my son there, this morning i literally had to force myself to go home because i really didn't want to leave him there.

The head and his teacher come across as really unapproachable, i am quite a shy timid person and every time i try to approach one of them i practically get shooed away or just ignored completely.
I have tried to call them, but every time i am told that they will call me back, but they never do, i feel almost frightened to approach them because every time i do they literally make me feel like i am bothering them in the middle of something super important.

They have the wrong address on his file, its not an old address or an address i have any connection to, i have no idea where they have got it from, but every time i tell them, at reception, on the phone or in a letter or note they just ignore it. i had a note in DS's bag yesterday with the same random address on the top of the letter.

In their info pack it tells you that you have to put their lunch money in a sealed marked envelope and send it in the childs bag.
I have done this, the envelope has been opened and then put back into DS's bag (with the money still inside) but they have sent me 3 reminder letters telling me that i owe them money for DS's lunch. letters that they have put into his book bag WITH THE ENVELOPE OF LUNCH MONEY in it.

I know that it is a good school, but i am just having serious issues with all this

I called the only other local school, and they invited me to go for a look around and a chat.
The only problem with it is that that school is miles away from where we live (the current school is only a 20 minute walk away) and it would be quite inconvenient to have to go there, it would be an hour walk just to get there from our house.

I just don't know what to do, all the staff at DS's school seem so unapproachable and intimidating, and their admin staff seem completely incompetent.
But its a good school and DS seems to like it there.

I dont know what to do for the best. I've been sitting here crying all morning trying to figure out what to do.
DH is away with work and i literally feel like i have no one to talk to about all this.

Jdore Thu 15-Sep-11 12:19:29

I'm so sorry.
I think what I would do is write everything down in a formal letter (including them making you feel uncomfortable and how unapproachable they are) and post it to the head. I wish to God I had done this 8 years ago. You are important they have no right in treating you this way. Are the other mums approachable?

kenobi Thu 15-Sep-11 12:28:12

Please also list the amount of times you have requested the address change, AND formally request a meeting in the letter.

Try not to use emotive language - you may feel shaky and upset, but the letter must read as unemotionally as possible. Say WHY it is important to meet with the teachers, and how dangerous it is that they still have not changed the address. Point out that the repeated but failed requests for an address change make you wonder what the school's priorities are.

kenobi Thu 15-Sep-11 12:28:52

If possible, print it rather than hand write it. People are very judgemental about handwriting, no matter how beautiful yours is.

DevotionAndDesire Thu 15-Sep-11 12:42:05

Thank you for the reply.

I have chatted to a few other mums and dads in the playground at drop off/pick up time, there are a few i kind of know from nursery that i say hi to and sometimes stand and wait with, but its only general small talk really, and i don't have any friends with kids at the school.

I did mention to another mum yesterday that i find the teachers and staff really intimidating and she said she knows what i mean but it might just be because a lot of them inc the head are all new this year. And maybe its because they know i am annoyed about things that the teachers are coming across as so unapproachable, because they know i am not happy about things they have done.

I know i have to get over myself and just sort out the problems with the school, by talking to the head/ his teacher, but the though of it makes me feel sick, even writing a letter scares me. i know that sounds pathetic, and i dont know why it scares me it just does.

I think it is also because it all got off too such a bad start i have held onto this negative opinion and it has made things that would normally be brushed away seem a lot worse than they actually are.

fivegomadindorset Thu 15-Sep-11 12:47:15

I would also send a copy of the letter to the chair of governors.

kenobi Thu 15-Sep-11 12:47:25

You're feeling utterly miserable anyway, so why not bite the bullet and write the letter? How much worse could it be than how you feel? Also, you probably are blowing a couple of things out of proportion because it's getting 'big' in your mind. If you sort it out now you'll burst the boil, so to speak.

I hate confrontation so I do get how you feel, but have learned over the years that the longer you leave it the less likely you'll get a positive result. Do it now and I bet you'll be amazed by how quickly you can straighten it all out.

DevotionAndDesire Thu 15-Sep-11 12:48:03

I did send them a letter (typed smile ) Kenobi telling them that they lunch money was in DS's bag, and drawing attention to the fact that the letter was addressed incorrectly even though i have repeatedly, verbally and on paper, informed them of my correct address, and yet they are still addressing letters with the wrong address.

I also asked for an appointment 'at the earliest possible convenience' to discuss some other issues i have with the school.
I have yet to receive a response. :S

Jdore Thu 15-Sep-11 12:51:48

How long is your Dh going to be away for? Can you talk this over with him or isn't he of the same mind. You are not happy about this and you need someone on your side. Try jotting down everything that has gone wrong/ upset you/ has gotten lost etc before actually writing the letter. With a bit of luck seeing it all written down will help you write it.

hatebeingmummy Thu 15-Sep-11 12:55:10

I second the letter writing idea. Don't send a copy to the governers at this stage as they might feel like you're going above the head which she won't like. But put something in the letter about "Being new to the school I'm not sure if this is the right avenue to take, I apologise if I should have writen to the Governers and can do so if this would be more appropriate"
That'll put the wind up 'em!

You don't have to be made to feel like this but I'm not sure that moving your son is the right thing to do just yet. Not is he's happy.

Another thing is that with schools it's not what you know, it's who you know... get involved in the PTA - they're always desperate for volunteers! Once your in with the queen bees of the playground you'll feel much better about it I'm sure.

I know it's scary though. I didn't know anyone when my DD started school last year. The PTA seemed really cliquey and there is a bit of an other world vibe going on... different rules about communication than anywhere else in life (adults calling each other by their last names for a start... pure weird!) but a year on I've built a nice little circle of mum friends, not real friends but we can all have amoan about the teachers toegther and I don't feel so alone.

Good luck

hatebeingmummy Thu 15-Sep-11 12:56:21

Sorry, X posted. So send the letter to the governers and say as you haven't had a response you thought maybe you'd taken the worng route and could they help?

DevotionAndDesire Thu 15-Sep-11 12:57:08

DH is in the army, he is going to be away for at least another 3 months.
I dont like to bother him with things like this when he is away because, a) he cant do anything and b) it will just make him sad because he isnt here and cant do anything. sad

It really sucks but i am kind of on my own on this one. sad

kenobi Fri 16-Sep-11 09:38:52

I feel for you. To have written TWO letters and had no response is really shocking.
Your THIRD letter needs to point this out - and I love hatebeingmummy's governors phrase, it's all velvet but with big teeth.


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