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very long and complicated but need advice please

(7 Posts)
BigOleMess Mon 10-Oct-11 13:54:21

I have to choose between 5 different secondary schools for DS

I live in Ireland so have to decide by Mar 2012, Ds will be 12 and has Aspergers Syndrome, very high functioning but will have less supports when he moves on to secondary school in Sept 2012

We live in a fairly large town, in a council house on a nice road that is attached to a not very nice estate, the only way in & out of our house is through the bigger estate

I HATE where we live but DS loves it, I love it that he is part of the community and feels he belongs, I am almost a recluse and rarely leave the house, I would love to move but am aware I could still be a recluse wherever we live, we have 2 dogs and a cat, so renting might not be that easy

School 1 - all boys school, 5 mins from house, good ASD support unit, most of DS's friends will go, approx 730 boys, DS says no as the tougher boys from the big estate will be going, I don't think an all boys school would suit DS

School 2 - mixed, 40 min local bus, more tech than academic, 1 very good friend going, will know lots of other kids, good with IEP's, approx 750 mixed pupils, have heard rumours of bullying, DS wants to go here

School 3 - mixed, 1 hour temp SN transport until housing transfer or private rent, recommended by DS's psychologist, 350 pupils, no good friends going, town but I don't know anyone there, DS not keen

School 4 - mixed, 1 hour temp SN transport until housing transfer or private rent, recommended by ASD support worker, 130 pupils, some friends in older classes, village, I know some people but not very well, DS keen but I'm not

School 5 - mixed, would have to move either transfer or rented, 400 pupils, 1 good friend going, seaside town, our fav place for hols, we go for 5-6 weeks every year, no idea on SEN provision, I have friends in villages nearby, DS thinks it too far away, I think I would love it

I haven't seen any of the schools yet but just wondered if anyone had any thoughts on what should be top of the list, the best school? secure housing? feeling you belong? happy mum?

if you got this far, thank you

Doodlez Mon 10-Oct-11 13:58:28

Option 2.

Heard rumours of bullying - it goes on every where - it's how the school deal with it that matters. Find out!

ChazsBrilliantAttitude Mon 10-Oct-11 14:14:04

You will need to visit the schools. You and your DS need to get a feel for them as it is hard to judge if it will suit your DS otherwise (there may be something about a particular school that your DS will find unsettling which might not be obvious from other people's views).

How likely is the housing transfer or private renting to happen? How will your DS cope with a 1 hour journey each way? Will he be OK on a local bus?

How big is his current school? Would he cope ok in a big busy noisy school or would be better someone smaller?

Sorry its questions rather than answers but these were a few things that occured to me reading your post.

timetoask Mon 10-Oct-11 14:17:03

Will it be easy for you to private rent? And if so, why are you living in a council house? Sorry if the question is silly, but I am not from here, I thought council houses were for people that could not afford a home to buy or rent.

If that is your case, then maybe before deciding you should find out about how easily you could move house?

BigOleMess Mon 10-Oct-11 14:42:18

Doodlz - yes I agree but the professionals are saying otherwise

I'm not sure how easy it will be to rent anywhere, we got a council house because we met the criteria for one

DS would be fine on the local bus for 40 mins, not sure about the SN transport for an hour each way, also he will feel singled out and I don't think that would be good for him

His current school is mixed with 600 pupils, he has an SNA for 8 hours pw and resource teacher for 5 hours a week, in secondary this will change to no SNA and 3 hours resource teaching over 5 days

ChazsBrilliantAttitude Mon 10-Oct-11 15:10:02

Could you try him in school 2 and then move him if it really wasn't working?

BigOleMess Mon 10-Oct-11 20:18:52

Chaz - yes we can do that

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