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School not being consistent with emotional support sessions that they suggested(4 Posts)
DS has been struggling a lot lately with school and home life. The school suggested some sessions to help supporting him emotionally and give him chance to talk to someone outside our family about his feelings etc. They told him they'd see him every week and that he could tell them his worries and stuff.
But they aren't seeing him weekly and he isn't being told whether he will be seen or not from one week to the next. He's been desperate to speak with them this week because of some worries about school that he wanted some advice from them
about but he's not had a session. It's not the first time he's been missed. There's no consistency and now he's getting more upset because he feels like they don't care about him anymore. I feel like I'm part of it too because all week I've been reminding him he needs to wait for his turn and then it's just not come round.
I know they're overworked and they don't have the support to go round the many children that need it and staff may be off sick etc so I empathise with the fact that they might miss sessions but I don't understand why they promised him these things and then don't even communicate to him about it. They've also promised him other things in the sessions and then not followed through with them/forgotten they even said they'd arrange stuff. Getting his hopes up and letting him down seems worse than him never getting his hopes up in the first place.
Is it worth mentioning it to the school? What would I even say?
I have a history myself of being let down in school and through the mental health services so I was dubious when they arranged this in the first place but kept my worries to myself. And now I feel desperately sad for him that he's being let down
Any advice would be great, thank you.
It wouldn't hurt to say to the school that he's feeling let down and very disappointed when the sessions don't happen.
As you say they might be busy and have over committed their time, Is there anyone else you know he could talk to regularly in confidence, a family member or friend?
Oh gosh, I can just imagine this. The staff will desperately want to help him but I imagine what’s happened is, as you say, the person who is supposed to do it is pulled to cover someone who’s off sick or something. School budgets are tight and there’s no spare money for anything. It’s a shame they didn’t communicate to him though. Perhaps send an email along the lines of ‘I’m sure there’s a good reason but my son is getting upset because he’s expecting a session then not having it - I understand it may not be possible to fit in every week but if you could let him know when it willl/won’t happen that would be really helpful’.
The problem is schools are being expected to pick up things which aren’t really in their remit - your son’s mental health is really an NHS matter, not a school one. But with cuts to healthcare funding, it gets shifted to school. If you can afford to pay for some private counselling or similar, I’d be inclined to do so, to make sure it happens.
This is the problem with schools being expected to provide free healthcare and mental health support now, on top of the usual teaching and education. Things that really should be provided on the NHS.
They simply don't have the staff or budget for it and if someone is off sick or a crisis pops up (which happens on an almost daily basis when you're dealing with hundreds of children) then it means that something has to give.
It won't be intentional, I'm sorry OP.