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Appealing against a Fixed Term Exclusion

(17 Posts)
Mog123 Sat 21-Nov-15 02:17:00

This topic was posted on a few years back but I wanted to share my experience that happened today. My son has just received a Fixed term exclusion for the first time and I was so down about it that I started pouring the internet for answers as I want to appeal. He only got 3 days so I now don't feel as bad. But an exclusion is an exclusion and noting to be happy about. He got it for chasing a boy after school in a threatening way. 3 other boys were present two of which chased the boy and ripped some of his clothes while my son and another boy ran off in a different direction to try and get away from the scene. I want to appeal as I think my son was coerced into this activity by a domineering friend. I know he should have known better. But sometimes its so easy to tell a child to "walk away" when they are scared of being beaten up for doing so. The school is allegedly an "outstanding School". But as was said in an earlier post; when they are outstanding they will go to any lengths to just get rid of kids out of the school. My son will miss 15 lessons in total and yet he was only given a scrappy piece of paper from English to read. This all happened at the end of school on Friday, so obviously there was no time to get work together for him. I'm thinking of ringing the school and asking whether I can pick some work up on Monday. Also I was mortified to hear that they sent my son home in a taxi and then called me to tell me he is on his way home. They said they were worried that the "bully boy" was going to attack my son so that's why they called for a taxi. I said to them why didn't they call me as I drive and even if I'm at work they should have let him remain at school till I came and picked him up. I later saw my son returning home on foot!! So much for the taxi. I agree that my son should be punished; but also in an earlier post a better punishment would have been an "internal exclusion". There is more to this than what meets the eye which is why I want to appeal to the governors as its clear my son was bullied into the actions. No appropriate work was given for the 3 day period. And we were only notified of the whole incident after he had been put in a taxi when the school knows that both me and my hubby drive. The head of year said she didn't call me as she thought I was at work. But then this means they couldn't have been that concerned about his safety if they were happy to send him to an empty house!!

Ladymuck Sat 21-Nov-15 11:00:45

You certainly have the right to bring it to the attention of the governors, but given the exclusion is for less than 5 days they do not have the power to reinstate, and do not have to meet with you.

"I want to appeal as I think my son was coerced into this activity by a domineering friend."

Peer pressure is a common issue for teenagers.

Do you know whether your school runs internal exclusions - not all schools do, and Ofsted are currently fairly dismissive of such policies. What year is your son in?

mudandmayhem01 Sat 21-Nov-15 11:07:45

This sounds very odd, when I think of children who have received fixed term external exclusions it has always been a last resort after a sustained period of poor behaviour and escalating incidents. If you have presented all the facts you have good grounds for feeling this unjust.

Bunbaker Sat 21-Nov-15 11:10:17

Have you spoken to the head of year or headteacher yet?

LIZS Sat 21-Nov-15 11:17:29

How old is he? Why did he not arrive in the taxi? I'm not sure about the appeal tbh, he does need to learn to avoid becoming implicated in bullying incidents.

noblegiraffe Sat 21-Nov-15 11:36:50

So your DS was involved in an exceptionally unpleasant incident in which a student was chased and threatened by a group of boys, including your DS, which culminated in the boy being attacked and some of his clothes ripped off (but not by your DS)? Is that right? It's not clear from your post how involved your DS was.

While I hope that the boys who actually ripped off the poor lad's clothes get a worse punishment than your DS, your DS does actually deserve a harsh punishment. In my school, bystanders to events who do not seek to get help would be punished (e.g. detention for watching a fight, exclusion for filming it).

My friend made me do it is a cop-out. Do you think the parents of the boy who was attacked would accept that and let your DS off?

lljkk Sat 21-Nov-15 16:07:54

He can't go out in public while excluded, OP.
School should set him work to do, though.

ValancyJane Sat 21-Nov-15 16:22:47

Just flipping it round, had your son been on the receiving end of that incident (which sounds horrible for the child concerned), I'm pretty sure you would have been outraged if the parents of the children involved had appealed the exclusion. However, I would query why he didn't come home in the taxi or why you weren't called to pick him up (that all sounds quite odd to me) and yes the school should set him some work on Monday. I hope your son learns a lesson from this incident.

ValancyJane Sat 21-Nov-15 16:24:16

Also, the school will be judged on their exclusion figures by OFSTED. Excluding students is not a decision that any school takes lightly!

TrinityForce Sat 21-Nov-15 16:26:22

I'd be asking what they're going to do when he's back in school about this "bully" they feared would attack your DS.

Sending him home in a taxi is hardly sorting the situation, is it?

admission Sat 21-Nov-15 19:52:26

The answer is that you can write to the governors about the exclusion but as others have said, the governing body do not in any exclusion of less than 5 days have the legal right to reduce or overturn the fixed term exclusion.

If the Governing Body are doing a good job then they will meet with you to listen to your concerns about this. But as others have said your son was present, he clearly took some part in the incident and therefore I can see no issue with the decision of the school to take this action. Sorry but the idea that he was somehow bullied into doing something is not going to be considered viable as a reason. Only if your son got 3 days and everybody else did not get any kind of fixed term exclusion would there be cause to question the decisions made.

To me what is far more of a concern is the idea that the school know there is a "bully" and are doing little or nothing about it.

Brioche201 Sat 21-Nov-15 20:00:24

I think there was a mix up and they phoned you that your ds was coming home in a taxi because of the bully, by mistake.I think that phonecall was supposed to go to the parents of the boy who had been attacked.

tiggytape Sat 21-Nov-15 22:03:35

As others have advised, there is no way to appeal this in terms of having it overturned and I disagree with you that an internal exclusion would be a "better punishment" anyway.

Better for your DS perhaps but not better for the victim who is probably and understandably terrified after being chased and attacked and outnumbered by several boys after school. And not better for that boy's parents who are likely to be distraught and absolutely furious in equal measure.
I think perhaps you need to consider what an horrendous ordeal your son was part of on Friday.

When I think of children who have received fixed term external exclusions it has always been a last resort after a sustained period of poor behaviour and escalating incidents.
Yes it they be used for an escalation of long term bad behaviour but equally a fixed term exclusion is also the correct course of action for one-off but very serious incidents (including violence). As such a child who has never had so much as a detention can go straight to exclusion stage if they do something bad enough.

I appreciate you feel defensive of your son and don't want him to miss lessons but his actions were wholly unacceptable and very, very serious. If those kinds of incidents persist, it is likely to be police involvement he faces not just school sanctions. If he is in fear of a bully then that needs dealing with but it is not justification to get involved in harming someone else to save his own skin or be accepted as part of a group.

BrendaandEddie Sat 21-Nov-15 22:05:45

Our place ould NEVER send a kid home by taxi

How odd

lougle Sat 21-Nov-15 22:20:53

I taught my DD3 a very simple lesson when she started being encouraged to do things that are naughty in Year R: "You can't blame your friend for your choices. Be your own person."

Your DS will learn more from this if you support the school and concentrate on how to encourage your DS to make his own decisions.

littledrummergirl Sun 22-Nov-15 11:39:22

My son was attacked in a similar way when he started y7. I knew the parents of two of the dc involved so i spoke to them in the first instance. I wanted to make them aware that we had contacted the police and they would have to speak to them.
One set were apologetic, we are still on reasonable terms. The other set came out with the whole "our child wouldn't be involved, was coerced etc", and kicked up a fuss because we called the police. We no longer speak.

The police then went to the school who also took action.
You are in my opinion being very unreasonable, your son was involved in a frightening and violent incident against another person. He needs to accept the consequences of that and you need to teach him that his behaviour was not acceptable otherwise in the long run he will suffer for it.

But make excuse if you prefer and allow him to continue as he is.

Incidentally my ds2 is now doing very well in school unlike those whose parents stuck their heads in the sand.

pinkdelight Mon 23-Nov-15 09:22:31

The logic of punishing the group, even though your DS may not have attacked the boy, is that your DS gave the bully strength in numbers. But for your DS and the others being there, the bully wouldn't have dared to make the attack. By law, if this was a legal matter, all the boys on the bully's 'side' would be culpable. If your DS didn't want to be involved but felt coerced into it, then that's certainly something you should address with your DS and the school going forward, supporting him in making friends beyond this group and in making difficult decisions to walk away rather than get involved next time. But this time what he did was wrong, whatever his reasons, so the punishment applies.

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