Can I complain about this?(17 Posts)
My DD is very small for her age. She's an August birthday so also the youngest in her year at school (YR2). Unfortunately there are only 10 other girls in her year and they are all Autumn birthdays so nearly a full year older than her.
This has caused a problem as the other girls often call her 'babyish', won't let her join in their games and pick her up and carry her around against her wishes (not just at playtime but during sport and lessons too).
We've asked the school repeatedly to try and stop this as it is really starting to affect her confidence and self-esteem. They say the right things but we haven't really noticed any difference.
When I picked DD up today she burst into floods of tears and is still crying on and off now. It was the annual whole school photo and she was upset as she'd had to sit on the ground with the reception and class 1 children while everyone else from her year stood elsewhere. The other girls in her class then teased her about it.
Would it be unreasonable to complain to the school about this? I checked and it was the head who arranged them that way not the photographer. It may sound like a small thing but given the background surely they could have put up with one child being out of height order?
Seeing her so upset has really wound me up so I'm nor sure whether I am over-reacting or not.
I'd speak to school it clearly is an issue. They should certainly be stopping the picking her up without consent. Maybe suggest some PSHE on it's good to be me/everyone is different.
Do the classes mix at all. Some time with yr 1 would give her chance to be the oldest.
My friend's son had this august birthday and small stature and he hated it.
Thanks for the reply. We've done all that and the school say they are doing what they can but don't always spot these things happening.
I'd (reluctantly) accepted that so what rankles here is that they are actually the ones who have made her feel small/inadequate today. Just can't work out whether complaining about where she was positioned in a photo sounds petty. I suspect it does but in the wider context it was crappy of them.
If it's upsetting your daughter, I wouldn't say it's petty at all.
I would definitely say to the school, they were at fault, actually worsening a situation they already knew she was struggling with X
I also have a petite August born DD. It drives her crazy being the smallest and youngest in the class. She's also had the being picked up and being cute thing. I think I would complain in your position. She should be with her class in the photo. Really bad judgement on their part.
If it helps I have noticed this happening a lot less now she is in Yr 3.
With the best will in the world, teachers will not be able to stop other kids saying things - outside school for a start. As a parent whose son was tiny all the way through school, I have to say that your best bet as a general approach is to coach your child in ways to become a 'Teflon' kid (whereby things don't stick). We told him that the minute he let others see he was bothered by any teasing would be opening the floodgates. We gave him ideas of light-hearted banter he could bat back quickly, and also encouraged his interest in performing on stage (music/drama) to boost confidence.
It worked. He's now nearly 20, had a major growth spurt at about 15/16 and is tall and, if I dare say so, knock-down gorgeously handsome and in demand from a queue of girls.
That's reassuring, clam, thank you - we also have a small ds who hates it. He's in Y5 but a lot of my Y2s are bigger than him. Good advice too
Difficult for the school to stop some of the issues in the school, but if you have made the situation known to the school, then one might have expected the head to have not made the decision they did. Possibly it had not even entered their heads as to what the reaction of your child would be, so having a conversation with the head teacher would be appropriate.
The photographer would have insisted on height order, otherwise there will be people who can't be seen, it is perfectly standard to be arranged in height order otherwise the photo looks rubbish.
However speak to her class teacher about stopping the bullying behaviour from her peers, this is not acceptable.
It's tough and we do work on trying to make her more resilient but when you are 6 and left out of all the playground games... She puts on a brave face at school but collapses when she geta home which breaks my heart.
I take the point about height order but it's for a photo that only goes on the wall at school. Parents don't buy it.
It's interesting really if they were singling her out for skin colour, weight or hair colour I'm sure school's response would be different. Small and cute? Not so much of an issue.
I think if it's upsetting her it's reasonable for you to mention it, but as part of re-iterating the wider problem, not just in isolation.
It is unfortunate that the year group has fallen that way - a risk with very small schools I suppose - but kindness should be fostered in any school.
I'd complain, she should have been with her class. She could have stood in something if height order was so important. School are reinforcing bullying.
I have a very small (and cute) Y6 - years 3's are bigger than him - but he's a tough cookie -
But - he's not left out or singled out by the other children he's part of the gang and has great friends
What your daughter is experiencing is bullying - being excluded - mocked and teased -
Stop making it about her highest/age and see what these girls are doing
Get copies of the anti bullying policy behaviour policy and complaints procedure and start quoting from it
The photo was insensitive and thoughtless - let the head teacher know how upset DD is - state
DD feels - DD says - DD cried
I work in a school, and it happens more with the reception children being picked up, and I always remind the older children that the smaller children are not pets or babies, but people. I always make sure the child is ok, because sometimes they are intimidated by the others. Perhaps your child needs an adult advocate, perhaps the class TA, to make sure this doesn't happen. Is she friends with any of the boys? Talk to the school, they can put things in place.
IME, becoming YR3 makes big difference. A lot of summer borns in my ds's class started to take over academically, emotionaly and physically this year.
To make you feel a bit better, my ds is small, painfully underweight(medical issue), mixed race, looks very feminine for a boy and a total geek. I have seen and heard him teased so many times for that. He sometimes tells me some awful things said to him, but he seems to turn out to be a quite tough one, and learned to ignore most of it.
I am sure it gets better as she grows, since only thing for her is being summer born. But those nasty girls(maybe they may not even realise they are being mean?) need to be dealt with.
I'd complain, but with particular emphasis on the consequences after about the girls teasing her because she was made to sit on the ground with the smaller ones because of her small frame. Then maybe the penny might drop that the situation occurred because of their poor judgement.
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