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Bullying letter from headteaher re yr1 son soiling himself...

(81 Posts)
sambam99 Sun 10-Jul-11 22:06:25

ON thursday I got the following letter from the head of my 6 yr old school.He soiled twice during this week of hot weather and 2 previous times in last 3 months.

Dear Mrs...,
Toay X soiled himself again and this time told his teacher that he thought he should go home as a result.Obviously this would not happen but nevertheless we feel we need to send out a meassge to him that it is not acceptable for a child of his age to soil himself regularly nor will it allow him an afternoon off school,I also do not think it is acceptable for me to ask staff to clean him up other than following a rare accident. We will therefore contact you if this happens again so that you his dad or a relative could come in, clean him and change his dirty clothing. YOurs sincerely etc etc.

I am very very angry as both my sons have sluggish bowels aggravated by the hot weather and the schools poor hydration policy . I have already left a terse message ont he schools answering machine...today the head sent me their complaints policy...
any advice

corriefan Sun 10-Jul-11 22:16:01

I think the implication there is that at some level he did it deliberately in order to go home, did this happen last time? Have you been to the gp about it?

winnybella Sun 10-Jul-11 22:17:37

I feel sorry for your DS, but surely it isn't a teacher's job to deal with it? It's not a nursery. They're willing to clean him up if it's an occasional accident, but not on regular basis.

admission Sun 10-Jul-11 22:19:02

Fill out the complaint form and see what response you get when you officially complain.
However I do think that there is an underlying problem here which you need addressing as to why your son thinks if he soils himself he will get a day off from school. Sorry don' t necessarily believe that this is anything to do with sluggish bowels etc, they are just the excuses for it.

whomovedmychocolate Sun 10-Jul-11 22:19:48

I'm not surprised he wanted to go home. Poor kid must have been mortified, especially if the reaction was one of revulsion as it seems to be from the staff. sad

Turn it round to them, ask them whether they are willing to guarantee your son will be encouraged to take regular drinks and also that he can go to the loo when he needs to during school hours. But they can't make you go in and change him. If he had a medical issue (which constipation can count as) it would be discriminatory to treat him differently from other kids.

And it's inappropriate to write to parents without at least calling and talking to you first. Surely that would be better, to have a quiet chat rather than this. Which is just bloody awful and makes everyone feel bad?

bibbitybobbityhat Sun 10-Jul-11 22:21:06

I wouldn't describe that as a "bullying letter". It really is unusual for a 6 year old to have lots of accidents like this - if he has been diagnosed with a condition, are the school aware of it?

bubblesincoffee Sun 10-Jul-11 22:24:00

It's fair enough that they ask you to come in and sort out your ds. The head is right, the teachers shouldn't be asked to clean up 6yo's regularly.

If you think the problem would get better if he was encouraged to drink more, then you could point that out to them. I'm sure they wll want to do anything they can so that this doesn't happen. It's not like they want to have to phone parents and deal with a soiled child.

morechocolate Sun 10-Jul-11 22:24:01

Sorry but school cannot say it is unacceptable for a child of this age to have soiling accidents even if it is very unusual for a 6 year old. There will no doubt be found to be a medical reason.

sambam99 Sun 10-Jul-11 22:27:02

Admission- he didn't do it deliberately ...he just tried to excuse it as diarrhoea whciht he teacher assumed meant he was trying to go home..he was just embarrassed.
Winnybella- he is perfectly capable of cleaning himself up...the teacher wouldn't let him. THere is a medical condition sluggish bowels the successful treatment of this depends on adequate hydration and avoiding poisons sch as white flour and sugar ( hence we don't have school meals) . The series of supply teachers we have had to endure were all informed of this just not the current teacher as he has been ok the last few months.
MY main point is that I find the headteacher sletter just plain bl**dy rude".

bubblesincoffee Sun 10-Jul-11 22:27:10

They can say it's unacceptable and get parents to change their own children. What's wrong with that?

The teachers are there to teach they are not nursery nurses.

exoticfruits Sun 10-Jul-11 22:27:40

I wouldn't call it bullying-they are just pointing out that staff don't clean up DCs (except as a one off accident) and that you need to go in with spare clothes and clean him up . What are the rest of the class to do if the teacher is out of the class and can't teach-an unsolvable problem I would have thought, if no TA?

bubblesincoffee Sun 10-Jul-11 22:28:42

Which bit do you feel is rude sambam?

everlong Sun 10-Jul-11 22:30:54

yabu

I don't think the letter was offensive at all. What would you have wanted them to say/do? And do you honestly think that would be realistic?

morechocolate Sun 10-Jul-11 22:31:02

School saying soiling is unacceptable when there is a medical condition is surely discrimination? Is it OK to say it is unacceptable for children to have asthma attacks for example. If a child is ill it cant be stated to be unacceptable. That is a separate point to refusing to clean the child.

Collision Sun 10-Jul-11 22:31:04

I do not find the letter to be rude at all.

As a TA I would not want to clean up after a 6 yr old (wouldnt really want to do it for my own!! never mind someone else) but if there is an underlying medical condition then you need to speak to the teacher again and make sure they are properly aware of it. He needs to have regular water and be able to go to the loo when he needs it.

I do feel for your son though. He must be vv embarrassed.

KirstyJC Sun 10-Jul-11 22:33:08

I think the letter is quite rude actually - it basically says 'your son has shat himself on purpose to go home and we're refusing to deal with it'.

Sounds rude to me.

I can't imagine how embarrased the poor lad is. If it is a recognised medical condition can you get a letter from the GP for the school? Or get school nurse involved?

morechocolate Sun 10-Jul-11 22:33:27

Also school stating it will not allow him an afternoon off school suggests they think it is deliberate soiling and not an accident which is also discriminatory if he has a medical condition.

MrsRhettButler Sun 10-Jul-11 22:34:19

HE CAN CLEAN HIMSELF! The op said so, poor little thing he must be so embarrassed sad
I would go and speak to the head again and also to each teacher every morning until the message gets through.
If the school already know about the condition and prevention then yes I would complain further

exoticfruits Sun 10-Jul-11 22:36:51

If he has a medical condition the school need to be informed.I still think that you need to be on call to deal with it-it isn't part of a teacher's job.Even if they are willing I don't see what happens to the rest of the class.

Pelagia Sun 10-Jul-11 22:38:38

I really feel for the poor lad. I have a 6 yo DS too and he'd be v embarrassed in this situation even with sympathetic staff. Can you send in a letter from GP stating his medical needs, ie hydration needs? Is the school nurse aware and helpful?

The staff may be there to teach but they are also in loco parentis, they work with small children, lets face it - shit happens.

corriefan Sun 10-Jul-11 22:39:53

My friend's ds (who has Asperger's) soiled himself when he was younger and she thought it was because he got attention when he did it. She chose the no-nonsense line the letter from school is suggesting. Maybe they think it has a psychological component because it has been more frequent this week. Does is coincide with events/behaviour, or is it purely a physical thing? Whichever way, it's not nice for him, poor mite.

AbigailS Sun 10-Jul-11 22:40:03

If your child has a medical need there should be a care plan drawn up with you, the school and advice from the GP and school nurse (if your LA still has them).
But, OP, is your concern bigger than the letter? Reading between these lines "The series of supply teachers we have had to endure" makes me think you are angry with the school about other issues.

MrsRhettButler Sun 10-Jul-11 22:43:41

Can we get over the teachers leaving the rest of the class? The op has stated he is more than capable of cleaning himself up!

Hassled Sun 10-Jul-11 22:45:18

The letter isn't rude at all. You've put 2 and 2 together and come up with much more than we can see, for whatever reasons.

I think you should go back to your GP. I don't really understand what "sluggish bowels aggravated by the hot weather" means but he can't go on soiling himself like this, assuming no additional needs - he'll be teased/shunned by his peers, apart from the pressure it puts on the school. Has to be sorted.

sambam99 Sun 10-Jul-11 22:45:25

I find the whole tone of the letter rude and unprofessional .. like something from the 1960's not the 21st century where "everychild matters" . The letter should be expressing concern and discusssion . The head is effectively demanding that someone is "On call" permanently when we both work just in case he might soil ( Probably due to the fact that they don't allow the kids free access to water or toilets during the day) . TUrning it about measn that if he is constipated then he can't coem to school becasue if we were at work they would have to leave him sitting in his own dirt until we arrived....errr serious cystitis risk there methinks. How does she define "rare". There are 3 staff in the room who already deal with an autistic incontinent 6 yr old in the class and as I've said before he's perfectly capable of cleaning himself up.

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