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My 5 year old is being bullied

(11 Posts)
LauraVonSlim Fri 22-Jan-16 16:41:44

Sorry if this is long but I don't really know what I should do next and I was hoping for some advice.

My 5 year old has been having problems on and off with one particular child at school since he started (he is in year 1) but it has got a lot worse recently to the point when my son is crying in the morning and saying he doesn’t want to go to school because ‘A’ is bullying him. Examples are pushing him over, jumping on his back, putting his hands around his throat and telling other children that he is going to kill my son.

Child A is from a ‘troubled’ home according to the headteacher. He used to have 1 to 1 support in the classroom and the TA would keep an eye on him in the playground but the funding for this has been cut and he now doesn’t have any additional support. Most of the problems seem to happen in the playground.

I have had numerous conversations with his teacher, and a formal meeting with the headteacher. They tell me that they are putting strategies in place such as teaching Child A how to behave better and teaching my son and others strategies to try and prevent the situation escalation such as not saying ‘no’ if this other child wants to play with them but instead saying ‘maybe later’ or whatever.

My son is no angel – he has got himself into trouble before (not listening, doing silly things etc) and I think this may be clouding the situation. For example, a teacher came up yesterday after the strangling/pushing over incident and saw Child A on the ground with my son and they both got told off for fighting. I asked my son if he told the teacher what happened and he said he did but the teacher just told them not to play together. Clearly 5 year olds aren’t the most reliable of witnesses but I do believe that the other child is instigating this physical behaviour and I can’t see how putting your hands around another child’s throat is ever acceptable.

The headteacher has said we need to give it a month and have another review meeting to see how their strategies are working but I don’t want to subject my son to this for another month. What would you do next?

Floowho Fri 22-Jan-16 18:01:55

i imagine there is a lot of plans in place for this child. What can happen in a school is that certain children get known for their behaviour by the children and always get the blame. This used to happen to a child I supported, he would get the blame for things when he wasn't even in that day. Go and mention it to the teacher again, saying your son still says he is being bullied.

Stars1 Fri 22-Jan-16 18:10:36

Start writing each incident down, dates and details and if the month wait is too long send a formal letter (email, to start a paper trial) asking for a resolution. Once the HT responds, then take it higher to the governors.

Good luck, it's a horrible situation to be in.

LexieSinclair Fri 22-Jan-16 18:11:15

I don't think it sounds as if the school are going enough to protect your DS. Whatever 'strategies' they are using clearly are not working with Child A and no way would I be putting up with this for another month while the poor boy is in tears before school. Does the school have a bullying policy? I would be threatening to escalate this if they did not come up with an acceptable solution.

Stars1 Fri 22-Jan-16 18:12:17

Should of included:

Take it to governors if you are not happy with response/resolution.

Lurkedforever1 Sat 23-Jan-16 17:04:03

I would be asking for what strategies are in place to prevent it in future. But I would also be asking my child to explain exactly what happened leading up to the event. I'm neither victim blaming or excusing violence, but discovering the trigger might give you a solution. And while it is an ott reaction whatever your son has said/done, I wouldn't immediately assume it's one sided.

A child at dds with a similar rep was always being blamed by another boy for hitting him, which was true. The other boy wasn't actually being deliberately goady or nasty, but he was winding him up, and the other child just didn't have the control/ verbal skills to reply in kind.

irvine101 Sat 23-Jan-16 17:24:58

I kind of agree with lurked, you really need to find out why your ds is being targeted by this boy. It could be possible it can happen without any fault from your ds, but he could be winding him up in some way.

My ds got into trouble once for hitting a girl. It's not like him, but it was seen by a lunch time supervisor and he was in trouble. He was lucky that a lot of children saw that the girl was the one who started winding him up by pulling him and pushing him etc., didn't stop even he told her to stop. My ds got into trouble with us for hitting a girl at home, but at school, they were told to apologise to each other.

LauraVonSlim Mon 25-Jan-16 12:29:00

Thanks all for your comments. I do ask him what leads up to it and he says he is just playing with other boys and this child comes up to them and then things happen. I accept that I may not be getting the full story of course.

I will start keeping a diary and make another appointment to meet with the headteacher.

irvine101 Mon 25-Jan-16 12:59:56

Sorry, I missed the part that the child is putting his hands around other child's throat! That's not acceptable.

Maybe he wants to join in with your dc's group, but he doesn't know how to be nice and how to communicate properly?

Anyways, hope it gets sorted soon.

AnitaChopraMatch Wed 03-Feb-16 16:18:39

Dear LauraVonSlim,

It sounds like this situation has been going on for some time and is obviously having a negative impact on your DS. All schools should have an anti-bullying policy, and it would certainly be worth getting hold of the policy for your DS’s school. Quite often they can be found on a school’s website, but if not the school office should be able to provide you with a copy.

Whilst it is always best to try and resolve matters at an informal level e.g. a chat with your DS’s teacher or the Headteacher, if that does not have the desired result you may wish to consider a formal complaint. Again, the school’s complaints procedure should be on their website, but if not a copy could be obtained from the school office. Usually, the complaints procedure will have a number of stages ultimately ending up with the Governing Body of the school. I do hope this is of some assistance.

starfish8 Mon 15-Feb-16 21:36:53

I was chatting to my husband today and read out your post whilst browsing this forum. He works in a joint health/social services unit as a Psychologist.

His advice (and what he would do if this was us) would be to call social services and raise a safeguarding issue. This triggers a set of statutory requirements where the situation and child in question needs to be assessed in short timeframes.

There is no way I would give the headteacher a month to resolve the situation!

I does sound drastic, but if a child was grabbing my child around the throat, basically assault, this needs reporting. In some way, I also feel sorry for the child in question, there could be serious issues at home where he has seen this type of behaviour.

I hope that advice helps you. It would also be worth researching 'Safeguarding in Schools' to help inform you in this area too.

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