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Would you move a yr 3 for friendship issues?

(29 Posts)
lostscot Mon 06-Jun-16 19:10:57

I'm at end of tether with my poor ds who's 8 and just don't know what to do for best. He's at the school I work in( I'm ks1 so not directly involved) in a mixed yr 3/4 class and has previously been bullied by another boy who's very subtly controlling all the boys and stopped anyone playing with my son as ds won't be told what to do by him.This child decides who plays with who, what games to play at lunch etc. The head has been very on the ball and has dealt with that bit but my son has been left the outsider and we can't seem to sort it. We had a party for his b'day and invited all the class, small class so can do but since then in 4 weeks 3 of what I've consider his best friends have had parties and left him out. Today he's come home upset just a day back after his so called best friend told him he's not invited to his either.
I know I can't expect school to sort out of school issues but what now? I can't bear him to suffer 3 more years of this but logistically moving him will be awkward due to my hours.

Fettuccinecarbonara Mon 06-Jun-16 19:15:44

I don't want to downplay what your son is going through; but my daughter is in year 3 now. The friendship dramas are horrific. She truly believes no one likes her.

Mothers of both sex children across this year group say the same.

Mothers of children in years 4+ say that yr3 was the worst for friends, bullying and attitudes.

Given there is 6 weeks left in school, I'd keep your son in the school, help him talk through some issues and give him responses and things he could do when the friendships become difficult and reassess next year.

That is certainly what I'm going to do.

Have you spoken to the teacher or other parents? What do they say?

blinkowl Mon 06-Jun-16 19:17:52

I would move him if you can. This kind of stuff can have a profound effect on a child.

ShelaghTurner Mon 06-Jun-16 19:18:36

Also have a daughter in year 3 and the friendship dramas this year have been unbelievable. Not trying to downplay it either but dd1 has fallen out with best friends of years so many times this year it's ridiculous. They had to introduce a counselling/activity workshop thing it got so bad.

CodyKing Mon 06-Jun-16 19:21:46

Will the class be the same next year or a new dynamic? Do you know on w his new teacher? Can you find a school with breakfast club?

CremeBrulee Mon 06-Jun-16 19:23:24

If my DS was unhappy at school and experiencing the friendship issues you describe then yes I would be looking to move him. Hope you can find a fresh start for him for Y4.

lostscot Mon 06-Jun-16 19:26:39

This is more than general falling out though, even teacher is saying she doesn't know what else to try!! They've tried sitting boys down to talk things through it she admitted the boys are just not mature enough for that approach yet. I'm almost thinking maybe it's ds fault but he's really not a bad boy. I'm just worried about him remembering this time and growing up hating school. Slightly complicated now as spoke to another mum with a child just left the other school option and she really didn't rate them on dealing with behaviour and bullying.
If only I didn't need to work id home school, wish their was a "alternative " school nearby!

NynaevesSister Mon 06-Jun-16 19:29:48

Friendships change as they go into juniors and it was horrific. But not the systemic isolation and exclusion your son is suffering. It sounds like you have already tried everything and the school sounds on the ball. I would definitely move my son in this situation. Find out if there are any places at local schools, take your son for a visit, and if he likes it apply for an in year transfer. It would be really good to get him in the new school a few weeks before the end of term so he isn't a totally new face in September.

Muskey Mon 06-Jun-16 19:31:24

My dd was badly bullied in school. It started in year 3. As things didn't get any better in year 4 we moved her. It really depends on how bad things are. If there is a chance that the dynamic will change then I wouldn't move him. If however things are going to be the same I would start considering your options

CodyKing Mon 06-Jun-16 19:32:59

There has to be other ways of dealing with things - my DD left one school - she wasn't bullied but another child was and she really didn't like Bing in the mix -
They need to teach the children not to be bystanders and inform the teacher of everything - by standing is the same as bullying in my opinion - there are work shops and teaching techniques available - such as 6 kids from a circle and they have to keep a child out - whilst child tries to force their way in - and then discuss feeling -
Play acting the bully makes the children sit up and think - as does the bullies parents being informed

Have you looked at the complaints procedure for your school - surprised how many teachers never read it - but you should be following the guidelines -

So third parties run anti bullying works shops and children sign up not to bully - they have AB mascots in t-shirts at playtime as a friend to go to etc

lostscot Mon 06-Jun-16 20:32:27

I'll ask about anti bullying group work and also going to speak to a friend who is a supply teacher as she has experience in this class as well as the other local schools.
I don't feel able to ask the other mums, we do speak in playground but can't exactly ask them why their sons don't like mine!
Next year is a new teacher I don't know and class will change as yr 2 come up, this could work either way but I don't a horrible feeling said child will get worse as he's one of oldest....

Mottled Mon 06-Jun-16 21:30:30

Sounds like a difficult situation but if there are 30 children in the class can you not engineer other friendships? There must be other groups that your son can play with? Can't imagine that one boy is controlling a whole class....

lostscot Mon 06-Jun-16 21:45:57

All small schools locally, there's 7 boys in ds year!

bojorojo Tue 07-Jun-16 15:08:17

I think if there are so few boys, then I would try and find a bigger school. You will have these problems forever. We found parents control parties too, so if you are not really pally with anyone they feel they can miss your DS off the invite list because they do not know you well enough to offend you and they do not consider your DS's feelings. I could write a book on this topic!

I am not sure a new teacher will sort anything as this is a playground issue that has spilt into an exclusion issue. No teacher can sort out party invitations for children. If 3 out of 7 boys have not invited him to parties, then I do not think these boys are friends. We had exactly the same problem and I think he needs a much bigger pool of friends, or when will this end?

In my DD's case, Y6 when the children finally threw off the shackles of the parental influence and DD was finally included. Too late, really as she had mentally moved on and went off happily to boarding school in Y7. Never looked back.

starry0ne Tue 07-Jun-16 18:06:48

Yes.. I think I would certainly look at other schools.

Are there any mums you could perhaps ask if they know of issues. I have often thought the teachers seemed to have known very little about friendship issues. However my DS ( year 4 ) teacher this year when I have had conversations has been well aware..So maybe worth chatting to teacher..You can come from the point of view of worried about DS managing and understanding the friendships to see what she says.

Tanaqui Tue 07-Jun-16 18:16:48

Tbh if you teach at the same school it may be part of the problem- the other parents may see you as "other" and not feel comfortable making friendly overtures, especially if they have younger DC for fear of crossing boundaries. Also he is just the age for them to tease him about it, and for him to be self conscious. Move him if you possibly can.

namechangingagainagain Tue 07-Jun-16 18:27:33

I'm not sure what to suggest for the best but you are not alone. DS in Y4 has been going through this for the last year or so. We decided not to move him. The school is great in other ways and local plus his siblings wouldn't want to move.
Although he wanted a party this year it was getting so stressful in who was/ wasn't his friends that he didn't have one and we had a special weekend as a family instead. Luckily he gets on well with his older and younger brother and gets on well with some of the girls in his class. In the last few months the alpha male has left the school , the whole dynamic has changed and he is much happier. I think all along he was trying so hard to be "in the gang" but he's come to terms with the fact that he has good friends.....just not the other boys in his year.

lostscot Tue 07-Jun-16 22:12:05

I'm still going round in circles thinking about it but husband had a boys chat about it all with ds tonight and he says he doesn't want to move which stalls that idea! I've always thought him being at same school wasn't ideal but being a village school there's been and still are staff with children in school without a problem.
I'm going to push out of school activities and try to get him more other friends for now. To be fair I think he's now developing a bit of a prickly attitude as having been on receiving end of so much hassle so we will work on improving that too.
I just need a nice lottery win and maybe I could homeschool for a bit!

oompaloompaland Wed 08-Jun-16 11:03:34

Hugely, hugely sympathise. My DD suffered dreadful exclusion in Y4 due to two particular children, and there was no end in sight ... in desperation we moved her at the start of Y5 and she is so much happier, in fact a completely different child now, with lots of friends. Would echo what another poster has said - if there is a chance that things will improve then you could consider hanging on in there, but if not I would suggest looking elsewhere.

CodyKing Wed 08-Jun-16 11:46:08

I would also add some children aren't a good fit for a school - that's not to day there's anything wrong with your child!
I moved DD into a poorer catchment school ' the children are far more grounded they value friendship over belongings - they are all welcoming and very friendly to me when I've been on trips etc'

It's like she's found her pepole!

Do consider looking because week is a long time for a child and you can just me mum at the gates and not a teacher in school

dulcefarniente Wed 15-Jun-16 00:24:46

I know what you are going through. My dd is being excluded too. School have had formal complaints by more than 1 parent about the child who is the source of all the issues, but nothing has been done, child's parent hasn't been called in. Dd is very demoralised and unhappy, not helped by the staff not taking any interest in her show & tell items or external achievements. Time and again she and her classmates take in their certificates from the sports club they belong to and the other children's pictures appear in the newsletter looking proud with glowing comments. Dd's rarely appear although she took the same certificates in on the same day. It's hard coming up with an explanation for dd which isn't critical of the school and that is believable. When this exclusion is raised with the teaching staff they say she needs to keep reminding them to take pictures which seems a bit hmm when they all go in brandishing the certificates together, and the teachers know they are all members of the same club.

We are looking at other schools.

starry0ne Wed 15-Jun-16 11:05:47

A friend of mine is in a similar situation ..Her DS's response was he didn't want to change schools.. She is looking at a bigger school.. The thing is at that age they really don't understand how different it can be.

I think at some point you have to make the choice for him.. At this age the new kids is still the novelty..They have been together long enough to enjoy someone new coming into the class.

Autumnsky Wed 15-Jun-16 11:35:27

At this stage, I think mums play a big role in who to invite to the party and also on children's friendship. Is it possible if you find out 2 children your DS likes best, and try to invite these children to your house, and chat to their mum, try to be friend with their mum?

Like when I make a list for invitation, I would ask DS's opinion, then I would add children who I think their mum is friendly .

Panicmode1 Wed 15-Jun-16 12:04:28

Huge sympathies - my son is going through exactly what you describe - previously friends who have been very close are now excluding him and being mean and he's being low level bullied which has been going on for months and the school just can't deal with it. He's gone from being very happy and sunny to sad, crying before and after school and it's awful.

I've been looking at local alternatives - the two private schools we could move to at a stretch are full, the state schools all have waiting lists. I've been to look at a wonderful prep today, but there are only 10 children in the class, and only two are boys......they say that there is a cross curricular approach so that the Y4 children work with Y5 in PE, some maths and English classes if they are G&T, and play out together, but I think it's probably too limiting. I'm so desperate to get him out of the toxic environment he's in though, and at the moment it's the only option.....I hope that you can find a solution.

I have actually approached the parents of the two boys involved and it has helped - he's had the best 2 weeks he's had for a very long time - but the cohort won't change, they won't muddle up the classes (it's a huge school - 3 form entry and it's a very challenging year), so long term I can't see that much will change unless we move him...but it's such a big decision.

MummyMaisy Wed 15-Jun-16 21:21:21

I would. My DS1 is now 11, but when he was in Year 2, he had lots of fitting in problems. He has always been shy, so it was very hard for him. We moved him, into a junior school, for the next school year, so it was kind of like a new school for all the kids, I explained the issues to the teacher before the school term started, and they were able to buddy him up, that boy is his best friend to this day! By being his friend, he has made friends with lots of other people, I definitely recommend. My other DC go to his old school, so it's a bit annoying, but it's worth it smile

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