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What can be done WWYD dc left out of friendship grp in class for 4th year running?

(80 Posts)
MintJulip Mon 17-Jul-17 13:51:59

Usually, they split classes, but for last three years they are not going too, in spite of for other years telling us how crucial this is. They shook up classes a few years ago and the way the cookie crumbled left DD to be the only one out of a group of four - in the other class.

Some said the would look at this going into year 4 but she was left out again as they didnt change class - we really hoped this year they would move class so she had a chance of being with at least ONE of the other three and yet again they have left class the same.

what can I expect? WWYD. I would say - just move her into the other class! Easy Peasy but as usual - things are never so simple are they.

OP’s posts: |
RedSkyAtNight Mon 17-Jul-17 14:01:09

So she's going into Y5 now? Just the age when girls get very intense about their friendships, have massive fallings out and all make friends with other people.

Much better to keep her in a different class IMO smile

MintJulip Mon 17-Jul-17 14:06:54

No I dont feel I can Red, she has missed out since year 1, literally all these years she has been on her own - whilst all her friends are in the other class.

She gets on with people in her current class, but all her play dates are with the others. Every year she hopes and prays she will be with at least one friend but to no avail.

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123rd Mon 17-Jul-17 14:07:39

Has she kept friends with her original group despite not being in the same class? If so , there's no problem. Their friendship is strong enough. If she hasn't, well she won't be bothered about being in the same class.
I agree yr 5 you need to have a varied circle of friends. Kids can be bloody horrible at that age

MintJulip Mon 17-Jul-17 14:11:14

No - its not a post about whether its a problem or not, it defiantly is a problem.

She had a massive wobble going into year 3 because of the separation and we were told by patoral care that they would look into it for year 4. However due to teaching issues and problems with the cohort my dd needs fell by the way side.

She very much is being bothered by it, she broke down in tears when they announced that once again, they would not be mixing the classes around. Every single year she hopes she has a chance to be with one closer friend.

Her friends in the other class of course are fine because they have each other.

I am not sure how to go forward with this.

OP’s posts: |
123rd Mon 17-Jul-17 14:20:07

Sorry. I'm not sure there is much that can happen. My Dc school wouldn't change one child. There are reasons for the class splits... obvs not saying your DD is a reason.

Justgivemesomepeace Mon 17-Jul-17 14:24:30

Something similar happened to my daughter in primary school. I left it as I was told 'they'll still see each other at playtime' and 'she'll make other friends' etc etc. She did but they were forced friendships really, she never really 'clicked' properly with the girls in the new class. They all came for tea at one time or another but I could see the friendships were just not the same. It massively affected her confidence, with the best will in the world she was left out of her old friendship group and things were never really the same again. She's just finding her feet again really in secondary school. I wish I had done something at the time and tried to speak up for her. I've a son in primary now and I've promised myself if the same situation happens again I'm going to do my best to speak up for him and at least raise it as an issue. Don't believe people who tell you it doesn't matter.

mrsm43s Mon 17-Jul-17 14:25:20

Can you not encourage her to make friends with some of the children in her current class? Invite them round for playdates/days out etc? It's not really healthy to have all your friendship eggs in one basket - this may be why the school split her from the group in the first place.

So playdates with new class friends, making new friends through hobbies and extra curricular clubs (eg rainbows etc) would be a great idea, and encourage your child to build a wider social group. She be stronger and more confident for it, and it's great practice for the transition into secondary which will be coming up in a few short years.

MintJulip Mon 17-Jul-17 14:44:59


I am so glad you understand what we are going through. It has affected my DD and she has got on with it, we just thought after so many years separated this year we would get a break. I have spoken to the Head who was not sympathetic at all and said " We cant change it at this late stage" But the problem is - we had NO IDEA they would keep the classes the same!

She showed not one teeny modicum of sympathy for my DD and said she didnt know about it.

The problem is - I had spoken to her about it before starting YEAR 4, and I asked to meet my DD teacher to tell her about DD wobble in year 3 adn WHY ! WE had also had pastoral care intervene because dd unhappy in class!

I thought pastoral care knew, head teacher knew - year 4 we wrote off - DD settled down - but still not as happy as she could be in class, and we thought Year 5 - lets wait till they shake the classes up again in year 5.
Now nothing.
The head is usually friendly, I am sure I tried to keep my tone friendly but she was cold and hard and horrid really.

mrs encouraging dd to have other friends is something we have done since nursery and she has a rotation of friends but her solid strongest friends who she wants to play with are all together in the other year. We do outside activities with other girls from other places and her class...she gets on with nearly everyone but her close friends and those she gels with - as we all gel with more people over others are in the other class.

The head didnt say " I will look into it, " or " if there is any movement in the classes we will think about moving her" nothing!

OP’s posts: |
RedSkyAtNight Mon 17-Jul-17 17:05:00

If you've asked the head and she won't change then the best thing you can do is to help your daughter become happier in her current class. I really don't think it's as easy as her moving class=all problems solved. As I said upthread she's at an age where friendships are fickle anyway; she may find that she actually gets on worse with these girls if they are in the same class (that's definitely been the case with my DC).
I think it's a real shame that she is so disappointed by not being with a few close friends - my DC have been to schools where they are mixed every year and every year they are split up from friends - it's never been an issue. Resilience is a really good skill to learn.

whensitmyturn Mon 17-Jul-17 17:12:02

The exact same thing happened to our dd after year 1 and what made it worse was that she was subject to bullying by another girl and felt she never had any of her friends around during class time to stick up for her.

After 2 years of encouraging her to settle in the class she was in and her becoming more miserable by the day we decided to do all we could to get her to move classes.
We spoke to her teachers, we spoke and e-mailed the head and finally at the end of year 4 she was given the news she could change class.

She has been a different child this year so happy and excited about going in to school and having a lovely time with friends.

user789653241 Mon 17-Jul-17 17:12:27

I think primary isn't the time to get so fixated to one set of friends, OP.
Are you still close to your primary friends?

Justgivemesomepeace Mon 17-Jul-17 17:14:04

I don't really have any advice but I can empathise massively. As you can tell from your responses people just seem to think it a fuss about nothing and they can just move on and make other friends. They don't see the impact on the child who is made to feel on the periphery of old friendships where she feels secure and has a sense of belonging. Yes they can try and make new, my dd is sociable and friendly and has no problems making friends but they just didn't gel like before and she didn't feel that sense of belonging. anymore. They were people she passed the day with and worked in class with but that was as far as it was ever going to go with those children. She had 'friends' in clubs she did outside school but saw then once a week at the activities. You can't compare that. It only lasted a year for her though as I moved her for other reasons (constant stream of supply teachers and bonkers head, crap school in general), and she immediately found friends she did gel with and blossomed again. Probably not a solution for you but I totally understand where you're coming from and don't underestimate the impact it has on your child. I don't know how to get people to take you seriously, but they certainly managed to move people when friendships were disruptive mid year, why not for this reason?

Lowdoorinthewal1 Mon 17-Jul-17 17:15:23

She hasn't been with these other girls since Y1 (when friendships are very superficial and fluid) yet she's still pining after them? I think that is a little bit odd.

TBH there is nothing you can do about it so I agree with PP you just need to encourage her to form good friendships in her existing class. Does she disappear off to play with these other girls every playtime? If so, maybe she needs to invite someone from her class to come with her, or commit to playing with a group in her class. Three years is a really long time to have not made some firm friendships in her class- do you think she is avoiding it? The other girls will not be the same people they were when they were 5-6yo.

whensitmyturn Mon 17-Jul-17 17:22:57

Totally agree justgivemesomepeace your dd sounds so much like mine.

GwenStaceyRocks Mon 17-Jul-17 17:23:57

It sounds as though you have spoken to the HT and they are not willing to accommodate your request. I don't see what else you can do.
My friend had this with her DS but it turned out the other parent involved didn't want the DCs to be in the same class (although they didn't tell my friend this.) So the school was balancing competing demands.
Tbh after 4 years, I think you have to encourage your DD to let go of her wish/need to be with the others. It sounds as though it has been blown out of all proportion if she's in tears at a class list.

metalmum15 Mon 17-Jul-17 18:03:40

Most primary schools don't change classes at all, so the kids are stuck together right from reception to year 6. The trouble might be, if she always gravitates to these other girls during playtime and lunchtime, then she's never finding the time to make some real friends of the girls in her class. I'm not sure you can do anything other than encourage her to play more with any particular girls she likes who are in her class, and maybe invite them for tea etc. She's only got 2 years and then she'll be at secondary where there's a good chance she'll be spending all day in lessons with nobody she knows, thereby forcing her to make new friends.

MintJulip Mon 17-Jul-17 18:42:27

I think primary isn't the time to get so fixated to one set of friends, OP
Are you still close to your primary friends?

Actually i do have some friends from Primary yes! Admittedly in the last few years much looser but yes.

Nursery to Reception she was in a three, it caused issues but she was happy, very happy.

Year 1 - she was in a class away from the other two girls, the friendship floundered, she made new friends in Year 1,we had play dates but nothing as close.

Year 2, still away from her BF from reception, friendship killed off with them.She made new friends - close friends another two girls.

Year 3, away from her new friends made in year 2. Friendship struggled because they would go and play together at breaks and she would be the one joining them. She was upset and we had a very tricky year.

Year 4 - same thing, makes a new friend out of school but still in the other class. Gets on with it hoping for a change in year 5.

Year 5 - same thing she is not with her close friends.

She is resilient, she does get on with it - she does brownies with other girls from the class, she has had closer relations with the other girls,...but her true friends are in the other class, and always have been.

There was a great group of them who all go to each others parties, they are a sociable group but i feel its a great shame she is not getting the maximum happiness from her primary school life because she has just been unlucky. her other friends have not been unlucky, they have been with the other friend .

Just thank you.It really helps when someone understands flowers.

I find this the whole thing strange - as humans dont we all click with people or not, or slowly becomes friends with people, some people we cant help but feel wary of?

I clicked with a girl at 9 years old and today at 42 we are still friends albeit she is over seas.

OP’s posts: |
user789653241 Mon 17-Jul-17 18:50:38

If they are true friends, separated to different class really doesn't matter.
They can still get together at breaks, after schools, etc., imo.

MintJulip Mon 17-Jul-17 18:55:51

Irvine, you see what you have just said - is what baffles me.

It matters to my DD, it matters to her.

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RedSkyAtNight Mon 17-Jul-17 18:57:18

DD has made a new best friend this year (Year 6). She is in a different class to DD.

DS has made a new best friend this year (Year 8). They have not a single lesson in common.

You are really way too over invested in the DC all being in the same class. If they are the great friends you say then they will stick together regardless. Lesson times are for ... well lessons - IME the DC don't get a huge amount of socialising time.

Justgivemesomepeace Mon 17-Jul-17 18:58:40

If it helps any she's 14 now and still good friends with 1 of the original girls and 1 from the new primary she went to and has made loads of other friends in secondary. It all feels a bit more 'diluted' when they move on as they are all in the same boat moving about round different classes, that she's not the odd one out anymore. She got through it, she's one of lifes copers. I just think its so unfair that she spent a long time unhappy when it just didnt have to be that way. And i feel guilty because i didnt kick up a fuss. It was actually 1.5 yrs until I moved her and this is such a long time to a child and yours has been dealing with it a long time now. She is also resilient and just gets on with it as am I, which is what makes it easy for the school to just brush it off like it's trivial.

MintJulip Mon 17-Jul-17 19:07:12

red with the greatest respect what your dc are like etc and their own very diff set of circs are simply not the same as mine.
It has affected my dd she has had the thin end of the wedge year in and year out.

What you or the teachers or the head feel about it are one thing, its upsetting I am informing them it is affecting my DD and no one seems to care. sad

She got through it, she's one of lifes copers. I just think its so unfair that she spent a long time unhappy when it just didnt have to be that way. And i feel guilty because i didnt kick up a fuss

Same here. I did kick up a fuss in Year 3, and I even met the new teacher in Year 4 when they surprised us by not mixing up the classes. But that teacher left, then you start all over again, ie DD being made to sit next the to naughty boys.

I guess I just expected more sympathy from the Head, or assurances that if the situation changed, she would keep an eye out to move her.

She couldnt have been less interested, it was not on her radar and she couldnt have cared less. I think it was this that surprised me the most.She also said it wasn't my place to advocate for my child!!

I get the impression if a child is unhappy in the school, thats that! Dont raise it, dont go to her about it...just forget about it.

OP’s posts: |
RedSkyAtNight Mon 17-Jul-17 19:19:35

The trouble is OP is that you can't just say "my child is unhappy because she's not in the same class as her best friends". Which is basically what you are saying. School will ask if there are particular reasons that she's not happy in her current class, and tbh you haven't come up with any - she's not being bullied, and she does have a good range of other friends with whom she socialises out of school.

You have absolutely no idea what would have happened if all 3 girls had been in the same class since Y3 .. you seem to be assuming they would all be best buddies and everything would be rosy, which of course they might have been, but it's equally likely that they would have had a huge falling out in the first term and now not be on speaking terms (and I know you don't like me mentioning my DC if they don't support your argument, but that's exactly what my DD did in Y3 with her previously best friend since nursery!)

School can't change her class, because that opens them up to every other child complaining they want to be in the same class as their friend. As plenty of people are saying on this thread, you need to focus on how to make your DD more happy in the situation you have!

user789653241 Mon 17-Jul-17 19:23:57

If the child is unhappy at school, of course its a concern. But sometimes parents making a big deal out of it doesn't help.
My ds has social difficulty, and made a good friend at last in yr3. He was separated from him in yr4. Of course I was concerned. But I tried to make it as positive as possible, and it worked out fine.

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